Regional authorities are today called upon to ensure integrated and proportional regional development, and the coordinating function they play in the economic and social development of regions is expanding significantly. Under these present-day conditions, regions and their budgets find themselves in a double trap. On the one hand, a number of the countrys regions owe significant debts to the federal centre, necessitating reductions in expenditure. At the same time, spending cuts are having a negative effect on a range of key items, including investment in the development of infrastructure and the chance to raise living standards and quality of life for the population. Is it possible for regions to combine their efforts in order to solve large-scale challenges? Are interbudgetary transfers an effective tool for development or for reducing regional poverty? What key practices exist globally for combatting ineffective regional debt policy?