Provinces of Russia
The federal subjects of Russia, also referred to as the subjects of the Russian Federation (Russian: субъекты Российской Федерации subyekty Rossiskoy Federatsii) or simply as the subjects of the federation (Russian: субъекты федерации subyekty federatsii) are the constituent entities of Russia, its top-level political divisions according to the Constitution of Russia. Since March 1, 2008, the Russian Federation consists of eighty-three federal subjects.
In 1992, the Russian regions signed the Federation Treaty (Russian: Федеративный договор Federativny Dogovor), establishing and regulating the current inner composition of Russia, based on division of authorities and powers among Russian government bodies and government bodies of constituent entities. The Federation Treaty was included in the text of the 1978 Constitution of the RSFSR. In 1993, when the current Constitution of Russia was adopted, there were 89 federal subjects listed. By 2008, the number of federal subjects had been decreased to 83 because of several mergers. 2 Russian cities of federal importance have a status of both city and separated federal subject.
According to the Constitution, subjects shall have equal rights as constituent entities of the Russian Federation. They shall have their own constitution/charter and legislation (adopted by regional parliaments). All federal subjects of the Russian Federation shall be equal with one another in relations with federal State government bodies. The federal subjects have equal representation—two delegates each—in the Federation Council, the upper house of the Federal Assembly. They do, however, differ in the degree of autonomy they enjoy (asymmetric federalism).
Federal subjects should not be confused with the eight Federal districts which are not subdivisions of Russia, are much larger and each encompass many federal subjects. Federal districts were created by Executive Order of the President of Russia specially for presidential envoys.

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