A governor of one of Russia’s East Siberian regions has offered a special incentive to households with family members called up to serve in the country’s armed forces following President Vladimir Putin’s announcement last month of a “partial mobilisation”.
According to Russian state news agency Ria, Omsk Region Governor Alexander Burkov has promised regional authorities will pay the costs of connecting such households to local gas transmission networks.
Media reports in the region have suggested the upfront costs would be between 200,000 ($3200) and 300,000 rubles for a standard connection for a household located close to an existing transmission network — a major expense for most families in the region, where the average monthly salary was estimated at just 48,400 rubles per person by the Omsk statistic agency recently.
Local reports also estimate that, due to the local climate, homes in Omsk region need to be heated for more than 230 days each year, further increasing the attractiveness of Burkov’s offer.
Natural gas remains the cheapest energy resource for heating homes across Russia, compared with electricity and coal, with the government regulating the price of gas supplied to households by state-controlled company Gazprom.
Burkov is not alone in offering an extra incentive for families with members called up to serve in the country’s armed forces. Other regions have offered deliveries of free allotments of firewood, coal, frozen fish, potatoes and sheep, according to local reports.