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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

The Rising Cost of Dying

The cost for digging a new grave in Moscow will more than double on Aug. 1, 2007, Svetlana Ozkan, the spokeswoman for the municipally-owned burial services company Ritual, said Friday.

The cost for a new grave will increase to about 11,000 rubles ($430) from 4,400 rubles (about $170). This is the second increase this year. Prior to Jan. 20 the cost was 2,700 rubles (about $100) for a new grave.

The cost of cremation will also increase 1,300 rubles (about $50) to about 3,800 rubles (about $150).

One reason for changes in prices is that the number of burials of low-income individuals has increased.

Since the state provides only 5,700 rubles (about $225) for their burials, Ritual pays the remainder of the cost, Ozkan said, adding that only in the first half of the year the city burial service lost 20 million rubles (about $780,000) on such burials.

"If we want Moscow cemeteries to look nice and peaceful like those in the West, we should be aware that it costs money," she said of the over 1,600 hectares of cemeteries and the 3,000 workers needed to keep the grounds in good condition.

Other funeral service providers offer the same market prices for services.