RA’s Daily Russia News Blast – April 10, 2020

Today in Russia: Russia and Saudi Arabia agree to largest oil supply agreement in history; COVID-19 cases pass 11,000; Moscow mayor to announce quarantine ‘digital pass’ system; Yandex notes an increase in quarantine violations; Moscow health care system ‘on the brink’; Moscow mayor remarks that state ‘budgets are cracking’ during the coronavirus outbreak; Russia to allocate nearly $14 billion in response to COVID-19.

Russia and Saudi Arabia – together with their OPEC+ partners – agreed to the largest oil supply agreement in history. The agreement, struck during a Thursday videoconference meeting of OPEC+ producers, includes total cuts of 10 million barrels per day, with half of this total coming from Russia and Saudi Arabia. Today, the G20 will hold a videoconference meeting of energy minister at which the oil supply agreement will be discussed. Russia views the supply agreement to be “accomplished.”

Russian President Vladimir Putin spoke with his US counterpart Donald Trump by telephone today to discuss the coronavirus pandemic and oil prices. It is the third time in two weeks that the two leaders have spoken to one another.

COVID-19 cases reached 11,917 cases with 94 deaths. The chief of the clinical research department at the Central Research Institute of Epidemiology attributed this rise to an increase in testing.

Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin announced that Russia will implement a digital pass system to enforce quarantine. Yandex, the Russian internet giant, released an analysis showing that a considerable number of Muscovites are not following quarantine restrictions.

Moscow’s Vice Mayor said that the city’s health care system is “on the brink” after coronavirus-related pneumonia cases doubled in a week.

Moscow Mayor Sobyanin said in an interview last week that “budgets are cracking” as a result of the coronavirus. Open Russia noticed that this remark was curiously removed from the televised interview posted on YouTube, although it was mentioned in news reports.

Bloomberg is reporting that Russia is preparing to allocate nearly $14 billion in funds for to respond to the economic damage stemming from the coronavirus. The funds are expected to come from debt issuance rather than from the country’s “$165 billion rainy day fund.”

PHOTO: Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks with US President Donald Trump by telephone. April 10, 2020 (kremlin.ru).