THE MODEST PUTIN

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President Putin makes 4,560 euros a month

A German newspaper has compiled a list of the official salaries of G8 leaders. The highest-paid leader is President George W. Bush; the most modest salary is that of President Vladimir Putin. Putin earns less than the average Russian minister’s salary.


The Bild newspaper (Germany) has compiled a list of the official salaries of presidents and prime ministers in G8 countries. The highest-paid leader is President George W. Bush; the most modest salary is that of President Vladimir Putin. According to Bild, Putin earns less than the average Russian minister’s salary.

President Bush makes $33,000 a month (24,500 euros). Next in line is British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, with 23,334 euros a month, followed by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe with 21,910 euros. German Chancellor Angela Merkel is fourth with 20,427 euros a month, and Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi has an official income of 18,900 euros. The French and Russian presidents are the “poorest”: only 6,600 euros a month for Nicolas Sarkozy, and only 4,560 euros for Putin.

Note that Putin is not the highest-paid Russian official. The salaries of federal ministers rose by 40% in 2006, with the average minister’s salary reaching $6,600 (4,900 euros) a month. Alexei Makarkin, deputy director of the Political Techniques Center: “It’s comforting to know that the salaries of Russian officials have started to approach Western standards. A rise in remuneration for high-ranking individuals usually indicates a decline in the extent of corruption.”

But Transparency International maintains that the rapid rise in the official incomes of Russia’s officials and bureaucrats is not making them less inclined to seek additional income from alternative sources. At the end of last year, Transparency International gave Russia a corruption rating of 2.5 points, compared to 2.4 points in 2005 and 2.8 points in 2004. According to Transparency International’s report, corruption levels in other G8 countries did not fall below four points.

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