Nearly A Third Of Active NGOs In Russia Getting Foreign Funding – OpEd


Newly released figures show that only about ten percent of the roughly 200,000 non-governmental organizations registered with the state are in fact actually functioning but also that three percent of the total number get foreign funding ( and

Combining those figures which were compiled respectively by the Social Chamber and the Higher School of Economics and which because of the vagaries of registration must be treated with caution suggests that approximately 30 percent of the Russian NGOs that are actually in operation are receiving support from abroad.

These numbers highlight not only the weakness of Russian civil society in this regard but also and especially the dangers inherent in Vladimir Putin’s ongoing campaign to label all groups receiving funding from abroad “foreign agents,” an effort that because there are so many in this category further chills public life in the Russian Federation.

Paul Goble

Paul Goble is a longtime specialist on ethnic and religious questions in Eurasia. Most recently, he was director of research and publications at the Azerbaijan Diplomatic Academy. Earlier, he served as vice dean for the social sciences and humanities at Audentes University in Tallinn and a senior research associate at the EuroCollege of the University of Tartu in Estonia. He has served in various capacities in the U.S. State Department, the Central Intelligence Agency and the International Broadcasting Bureau as well as at the Voice of America and Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty and at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Mr. Goble maintains the Window on Eurasia blog and can be contacted directly at [email protected] .

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