Despite a free-falling ruble and a wealth of other economic woes, the Russian government has announced a substantial increase in funding for state-run media outlets, a move analysts linked with the Kremlin's desire to win sympathies abroad.
The measure — which was stipulated in Russia's federal budget for 2015-17 — comes at a high-stakes period for Russian media.
Moscow has made clear its intent to broadcast its own narrative to international audiences, in a bid to counteract Western media outlets' largely negative coverage of Russian affairs.
Meanwhile, Russian lawmakers are grappling with legislation to diminish the presence of foreigners in media on its own soil. The State Duma passed in its first reading Tuesday a bill limiting foreign ownership of Russian media assets to 20 percent, a significant decrease from the current existing ceiling of 50 percent.