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Russia Proposes International System of Time Zones

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Published 20-Oct-2010

The Liberal Democratic Party of Russia introduced a draft bill that will move Russia to the international system of time zones (Standard Time plus one hour), the same system that worked for the USSR from 1930 to 1981. The bill would change the existing order of time calculation within the Russian territories and eliminate daylight saving time (DST).

Kremlin in the Evening Moscow, Russia

The proposed bill will move Russia to the International System of Time Zones.

©iStockphoto.com/Mordolff

The Proposed Bill

The Liberal Democratic Party (LDPR) which is headed by Vladimir Zhirinovsky, introduced the bill “Transition of the Russian Federation to the International system of Time Zones” that proposes a return to the international system of time zones, which is Standard Time plus one hour. This system was used for calculating the time and worked in the USSR from 1930 to 1981.

The bill proposes to eliminate daylight saving time (DST) and rather than changing the seasonal clock to “summer time”, the actual working hours of organizations and institutions would change in hopes to save daylight in the same way as it would during DST. This system of changing the clocks for organizations and institutions would begin on the first Monday in April and end on the first Monday of November each year.

The bill hopes to keep a permanent procedure for calculating the time in Russia throughout the year, help people avoid the harmful effects of changing their biological clock and save electrical energy. If the bill is approved, it will come into effect on January 1, 2011.

DST and Time Zones in Russia

The abolishment of DST and time zones in Russia has been topics of debate in recent years. In November 2009, a draft law was discussed that called for the abolition of Russia’s DST arrangements. However, the deputies noted that there wasn’t a significant effect on the energy savings or health problems among citizens that would result in an abrupt change to the schedule.

A plan to reduce Russia’s time zones from 11 time zones to 9 was submitted to the State Duma in December 2009. Russia reduced the number of time zones on March 28, 2010 after Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin signed decrees to abolish the time zones of four Russian regions.

Time in Russia

Russia currently has nine time zones:

  • Kaliningrad Time (USZ1) - UTC +2 is observed in Kaliningrad Oblast.
  • Moscow Time (MSK) - UTC+3 is observed in most of European Russia. The Udmurt Republic and the Samara Oblast moved to the same time zone as Moscow on March 28, 2010.
  • Yekaterinburg Time (YEKT) - UTC+5 is observed in Bashkortostan, Chelyabinsk Oblast, Khantia-Mansia, Kurgan Oblast, Orengburg Oblast, Perm Krai, Sverdlovsk Oblast, Tyumen Oblast, and Yamalia.
  • Omsk Time (OMST) - UTC +6 is observed in Altai Krai, Altai Republic, Novosibirsk Oblast, Omsk Oblast, and Tomsk Oblast. The Kermerovo Oblast moved to the same time zone as Omsk Oblast on March 28, 2010.
  • Krasnoyarsk Time (KRAT) - UTC+7 is observed in Khakassia, Krasnoyarsk Krai and Tuva.
  • Irkutsk Time (IRKT) - UTC+8 is observed in Buryatia and Irkutsk Oblast.
  • Yakutsk Time (YAKT) - UTC+9 is observed in Amur Oblast, western Sakha Republic and Zabaykalsky Krai.
  • Vladivostok Time (VLAT) - UTC+10 is observed in the Jewish Autonomous Oblast, Khabarovsk Krai, Primorsky Krai, central Sakha Republic, and Sakhalin Island.
  • Magadan Time (MAGT) - UTC+11 is observed in Magadan Oblast, eastern Sakha Republic, and Kuril Islands. The Kamchatka Krai and Chukotka moved to Magadan Time on March 28, 2010.

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