MOSCOW, June 22. /TASS/. Russia’s expenses on the 2018 FIFA World Cup were cut by about 30 billion rubles ($560 million), according to a government resolution on amending the country’s program of preparations for the global football event published on Monday.
Under the government’s resolution, expenses on the program were cut from 660.6 billion rubles ($12.3 billion at the current exchange rate) to 631.5 billion rubles ($11.78 billion).
According to the document, 335.2 billion rubles ($6.26 billion) will be allocated from the federal budget, 97.2 billion rubles ($1.8 billion) from regional budgets and 199.2 billion rubles ($3.7 billion) by organizations.
Russia won the bid to host the 2018 World Cup over four years ago in a tight race against the joint bid from England, Portugal and Spain and the joint bid on behalf of Belgium and the Netherlands.
Russia selected 11 host cities to be the venues for the matches of the 2018 World Cup and they are Moscow, St. Petersburg, Sochi, Kazan, Saransk, Kaliningrad, Volgograd, Rostov-on-Don, Nizhny Novgorod, Yekaterinburg and Samara.
The matches of the 2018 World Cup will be held between June 14 and July 15 at 12 stadiums located in the 11 mentioned above cities across Russia. Two of the stadiums are located in the Russian capital.
Russia is currently in full swing preparations for the Preliminary Draw, which is the first major kick-off event ahead of the global tournament itself.
The draw for the 2018 FIFA World Cup Preliminary Competition will be held on July 25 in Russia’s second largest city of St. Petersburg with a total of 208 nations having signed up for the participation in the event.
It will be for the first time in the history of World Cups, when all national teams registered for the Preliminary Draw. Russia as the hosting nation automatically qualified for the championship and therefore is not taking part in the preliminary competition.
The first major kick-start event of the 2018 World Cup will be held at the historic Konstantinovsky Palace, a stronghold of Russia’s rich culture located on the Gulf of Finland’s stunning shoreline. It used to serve in the 18th century as one of the residences of Russia’s imperial family.