August 1 - Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has distributed the first lot of funding for the building of stadia which will be hosting the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
A total of 2.9 billon rubles (£58 million/$88 million/€66 million) was signed off by Medvedev and will be distributed across seven regions which will be hosting matches in five year's time.
The money is the first part of a projected 250 billion rubles (£4.9 billion/$7.5 billion/€5.7 million) that the Russian Government has allocated to spend on the 12 stadiums and their immediate infrastructure.
The total budget for the 2018 World Cup is 664 billion rubles (£13 billion/$20 billion/€15 billion).
The rest will be put toward improving the country's transport infrastructure.
The first round of funds will be shared between the regions of Mordovia, Volgograd, Kaliningrad, Nizhny Novgorod, Samara, Sverdlovsk and Rostov, each of which is constructing a new stadium.
The money "will provide funding for design and survey work for the construction or renovation of seven stadiums for the World Cup 2018 in Russia," Medvedev said in a statement on the Government's website.
Ten of the 12 stadiums across 11 host cities that will be used for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, which runs from June 8 to July 8, will be built from scratch.
The seven arenas that come under this first phase of funding will host group matches and each will have a capacity of around 45,000.
Earlier this year, Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko set a 14.5 billion ruble (£289 million/$440 million/€332 million) budget for each stadium.
Moscow's Luzhniki stadium which will play host to the 2018 World Cup Final is to undergo a 26 billion rubles (£525 million/$800 million/€604 million) redevelopment in time for 2018, following the conclusion of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) Athletics World Championships taking place later this month.
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