With Russia's car market in the doldrums, hopes that a scheme to encourage the replacement of old cars with new ones will kick-start the market are facing some doubts that it will be very effective.

Some say the scale of the project is too small, and that the country's vehicle recycling infrastructure is far from ready.

Under the scheme, the state promises 50,000 roubles - around $1,700 - to owners recycling cars 10 years old and older. They can use it to buy a new Russian or locally assembled foreign car.

Ilya Shwartzburg, a retired automotive journalist speaking to the Skrin news agency, said he doubts the program will make a dent in updating Russia's ageing car fleet. "The state should offer more money to car owners - maybe 75,000 roubles," he said.

The report added that in Russia less than 20 percent of old cars are currently recycled, and that legislation is far from ready to support effective and environmentally friendly recycling.