The surplus of Russia's consolidated budget will amount to about 300bn rubles (about $9.87bn) in 2004, Deputy Finance Minister Tatiana Golikova declared at a meeting of the tripartite commission for regulating budget relations today. According to her, revenues of the consolidated budget are planned to be 4.5 trillion rubles ($148.11bn), while expenses are to amount to 4.2 trillion rubles ($138.24bn).
Golikova also noted that the total amount of revenues of regional budgets in 2004 was estimated at 1.801 trillion rubles ($59.28bn), expenses at 1.892 trillion rubles ($62.28bn). She stressed that the 90bn-ruble (about $3bn) deficit does not take into account subsidies from the federal budget. Some 306.7bn rubles ($10.1bn) will be allocated to regions from the federal budget next year. So, the surplus of regional budgets will be 216.7bn rubles ($7.1bn).
Representatives of the Israeli Defence Ministry responded to recent reports about the possible delivery of S-300 SAM systems from Russia to Syria. Israeli Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman said that Israel would destroy those systems
Russia is to start supplying S-300 air defence systems to Syria in the near future. The shipments will be conducted free of charge