A colleague forwarded this to me, sourced from here. It describes the procedures, time, and cost to build a warehouse in Russia.
Data as of: January 2008
Estimated Warehouse Value: RUB 26,120,000
54 different bureaucratic hurdles to overcome in order to build a warehouse. And it should be noted that the costs listed are the official costs only, which the authority in question can legally charge. Often before an authority will consider an application, the submitted documents must be checked and approved by a third party private company which is the only one the authority will recognise, and hence can charge what it likes. I have seen these companies charge $30k for “pre-approving” what the governmental authority charges $200 for, and it is not difficult to understand where a big chunk of this additional fee ends up. With so many authorities to satisfy the scope for corruption is enormous, and many of these approvals bodies have become industries in themselves offering lucrative careers involving little more than glossing over documents at ones leisure whilst accepting hefty backhanders either directly or via a third party company, which may or may not be owned by your brother.
As Tim says, this might give you some idea of the time and money it would take to try to build something really big—such as an oil platform.
If anyone wants to know why Russia remains poor despite a well educated population possessing impressive technical skills, looking at how long it takes to complete a simple construction project and what is involved is a good place to start looking.
You have to sink all of that time and effort into building the facilities—and then the Russian government decides that it is going to confiscate your asset anyway (good luck cosying up to Shell, Putin).