RUSSIA is launching a US-style War on Corruption
THE RUSSIAN authorities, the State Duma, the Federation Council, the Council of Ministers and Putin himself are leading the charge against the worst corruption in the history of Russia – of which it is already estimated that the corrupt hold $200 billion per year or more – perhaps three times the country’s national GDP.
Russia has one of the highest living standards in the world, of which $200 billion is the third highest proportion behind India and China. But the figure is little more than an epidermis covering the accumulated debt of the past 70 years. Hence the need to pluck the cancerous growth of corruption.
Putin is toasting the fight on corruption, calling it the “central task” of Russia in the 21st century. He has decreed the roll-out of the long-awaited National Anti-Corruption Strategy by 2019, which will re-boot the country’s war on graft.
Read more about it here.
In the past, Russia did carry out anti-corruption campaigns against some of its most odious companies, such as Russian Railways, which has almost nothing to do with Russia. Even though they could be prosecuted in other countries, not a single banker, industrialist or oligarch has ever been arrested or charged in Russia.
But the fight on corruption is more than an ordinary business issue. It is a matter of survival for the Russian state – or at least the Kremlin, which counts on its management to maintain support among its population of 143 million.