As reported by Censor.NET, this was announced by former adviser of Russian president Andrii Illarionov in his blog on Ekho Moskvy. He noted that there had been previous attempts to calculate Moscow's costs for the war, in particular in the killed Russian opposition politician Boris Nemtsov's report "Putin. War." ]
"The total estimate received by adding up results on several items in the [Nemtsov's -ed.] report (direct expenses, refugees, Crimea) was 800 billion rubles, or around $18 billion," Illarionov wrote.
Read more: Nemtsov report: "70 Russian servicemen killed near Debaltseve"
"However, this estimate does not cover all the expenses that should be considered. First, all war expenses in the war against Ukraine are much higher than direct expenses for combat activities on the territory of Ukraine. Second, expenses on preparation and conduction of the war with Ukraine appeared long before the actual military events against Ukraine. Third, this war by the Kremlin is not the war with Ukraine only. Fourth, additional expenses related to preparation and conduction of military activities are levied not only on the state budget but also upon private sector," the former adviser noted.
He also said that previous estimates did not include human losses (in Russia, Ukraine, and other countries), the cost of the destroyed housing, damages to manufacture, transport, and other infrastructure; costs related to displace of millions of refugees, their rehabilitation and settling at new areas, and other costs.
Illarionov stated that the war costs should be calculated starting from January 2012, when Russia sharply increased expenses on rearmament. The former adviser states that over the four years, Russia has spent $377 billion.
"The total price of the current war (additional military expenses plus additional private capital outflow) in 2012-2015 is about $94 billion per year, which totals $377 billion over the four years," Illarionov argues.