MOSCOW BLOG: will Russia’s infrastructure spending cause a boom? By Vladimir Popov

The Kremlin is launching into a six-year long RUB27 trillion ($400bn) spending bonanza that is intended to transform the economy. The way it is going to do that is to spend a third of the money on infrastructure and if the money is well spent it could lead to a boom.

Infrastructure is an “economic multiplier”. Put simply: for 1% of GDP spent on infrastructure on average, the OECD countries have added at least 1.6% of growth to GDP, according to Dr Vladimir Popov of the Dialogue of Civilisations Research Institute (DOC) in a recent paper looking at OECD members’ investment and growth in the last decade.

Vladimir Popov is a Principal Researcher in the Central Economics and Mathematics Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences. He is also a professor emeritus at the New Economic School in Moscow, and an adjunct research professor at the Institute of European and Russian Studies at Carleton University in Ottawa. In 2009-15 he worked in DESA, UN, as a Senior Economic Affairs Officer and Inter-regional Adviser. He has published extensively on world economy and development issues (he is the editor of three books, and author of ten books and hundreds of articles, including in the Journal of Comparative Economics, World Development, Comparative Economic Studies, Cambridge Journal of Economics, New Left Review, as well as essays in the media). His books and articles have been published in Chinese, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, and Turkish. His most recent book is “Mixed Fortunes: An Economic History of China, Russia, and the West” (Oxford University Press, 2014). He graduated from the Economics Department of the Moscow State University in 1976, and holds PhDs (Candidate of Science, 1980; and Doctor of Science, 1990) from the Institute for US and Canadian Studies of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR