Republic head Aysen Nikolayev also lashed out at Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Kozak who had said that the quality of gasoline in Sakha left much to be desired, pointing out that those responsible for that situation are in Moscow not Yakutsk and that Yakutsk is trying to do the best it can given such constraints.
If Sakha can achieve its goals on gas prices, its population will be pleased but it may also seek to have Yakutsk take the initiative in other areas as well, something that would erode Moscow’s control of a republic that is larger than all the EU countries put together. But there is another likely consequence that Moscow needs to reflect upon.
Other republics and regions are certain to be watching what Sakha is doing. If what it is trying out works, they may try it out as well. And a future historian may conclude that the latest wave of imperial devolution in Russia began not in meetings with banners about sovereignty but at gas stations where even more people spend their time.