Zhukov Names Hardest-Hit Regions

Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Zhukov said on Saturday that the country's worst-hit economic sectors included the heavy machinery and steel industries, and named several regions that could require "special attention."

"If we talk about regions which require special attention, they are the Vologda, Chelyabinsk, Sverdlovsk, Nizhny Novgorod and Yaroslavl regions," said Zhukov, RIA Novosti reported.

The Chelyabinsk region is home to billionaire Igor Zyuzin's steel and coal producer Mechel, Magnitogorsk Iron & Steel Works, or MMK, the country's third-largest steelmaker, ChTPZ Group and Russian Copper Co.

Chelyabinsk Pipe Works and Pervouralsky Novotrubny Works, the pipe producers controlled by billionaire Andrei Komarov's ChTPZ Group, may cut as much as 25 percent of their workforce next year, or about 5,000 jobs, as demand slows, the companies said last month.