Putin warns Sochi construction firms to hurry up

Russia President Vladimir Putin on Friday warned construction companies working in the 2014 Olympic city of Sochi against inflating prices and lagging behind schedule.

Putin has been a key backer of Sochi's bid to host the Olympics and has personally overseen most of the preparations.

A day after the authorities announced they had foiled a terrorist plot on the Olympic city, Putin went to Sochi to inspect sites for the Winter Games and chide construction companies. He reminded their executives they are responsible for the bills they submitted to the government years ago, and warned against inflating prices in the final months of building the Olympic infrastructure in the Black Sea resort.

"I'm aware of the desire of some ordering parties and subcontractors, to increase the cost of the sites now, in the final stages of the construction," Putin said in televised remarks. "This is unacceptable."

Less than two years before the Sochi Games, Putin also said the government could fine companies that are lagging behind in construction.

The Sochi Olympics budget is about $6.5 billion. More than half of the funds come from the private sector.

Russia's secret service said on Thursday its agents discovered caches of weapons that included grenade launchers and surface-to-air missiles. It said the plot was to attack Sochi before and during the 2014 Olympics.

The International Olympic Committee said it has no doubt that Russian authorities will be able to ensure security in Sochi during the games.