The new second stage at the Mariinsky Theater is expected to cost EUR 250 million, said Federal Culture and Cinematography Agency head Mikhail Shvydkoi in a press conference yesterday. This latest estimate is almost three times the USD 100 million price tag determined by an international competition for the stage construction last July.
In addition, Shvydkoi said an agreement would be signed with competition winner French architect Dominique Perro at the end of this month. He added that the contents of the agreement were already agreed on between the two sides back in February and the delay in signing the agreement is connected with the reorganization in the Russian government. According to the agreement, costs of preliminary work connected with construction of the stage will reach EUR 5 million, said Shvydkoi.
The government requires that the new stage covers an area of 39 thousand square meters and has an auditorium capacity of 2 thousand people. Planners say the stage will be built by 2009 and paid for by the federal budget.
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