Russia and the great land giveaway in the Far East
А little over a year ago, Russia started a program called “A Hectare in the Far East,” which offered citizens free land in the sparsely populated areas of the Far East to encourage migration.
The project was met with much skepticism, but it has so far exceeded expectations, with more than 95,000 applications lodged and more than 21,600 plots of land registered to new users.
While some critics remain, analysts estimate the free land program could act as a catalyst for the biggest migration trend to the Russian Far East since the time of the agrarian reform at the start of the 20th century.
Still, there is much work to do on building infrastructure and a lot of space to fill. In total, more than 145 million hectares of land have been allotted for the distribution program.
The nine regions of the Russian Far East account for 36% of the country’s land mass, yet only 6.2 million people live in those areas, or about 5% of the Russian population.
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