Uhm... what does any of that have to do with Russia's tourism minister receiving a directive from Putin to pay Disney (ballpark figure, no idea what it would really cost)- $100 million for a Russia pavilion sponsorship? Are you saying Russia is incapable of flushing massive amounts of money down the toilet in order to prop up their image as a world leader/quasi-superpower status despite the country running huge deficits and teetering on financial collapse? They spent $51,000,000,000 on Sochi and have already spent over $10,000,000,000 on the 2018 World Cup (and that number will probably double once all of the backroom deals and phony accounting is factored in).Russia is impoverished. There's no way they could afford to sponsor a pavilion. I was there two years ago, and it was a very sad place. Other great candidate countries are facing similar economic crises, including Greece, Brazil and Egypt. Most of the Pavilions were sponsored and built when the Cold War was still going on, and economic barriers between countries were much higher. The end of the Cold War meant that having allies was no longer as imperative for countries, and the lowering of economic barriers meant that foreign countries no longer needed a big time Epcot foot in the door to help make connections in America. Put another way, the incentives for countries to plant themselves in Orlando is no longer as advantageous. Sadly, I do not think Disney will have an easy time adding pavilions for the foreseeable future.
The amount of money needed to showcase the greatness of Mother Russia to 10 million visitors a year at EPCOT is a drop in the bucket. They probably spend more on a one lane highway leading to a mid-level politician's estate on a hilltop (again, after the backroom deals and phony accounting are factored).
Come on, Russia has been impoverished to a degree for 30 years. Even throughout the late 70's and early 80's most Russians standards of living were below much of the industrialized West. That hasn't stopped them from electing a strong man who promises them a better life in return for that leader being allowed to be a corrupt business oligarch who showers money on his associates, blows a hole in his country's budget, turns the country into an isolated international pariah and ultimately has scores of people love him for it (at some point I may have gotten away from describing Putin).