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ST. PETERSBURG, June 21 (Itar-Tass) —— Four years on, President Vladimir Putin will attend the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum again on Thursday, June 21.
It was during Putin’s previous presidential term (2000-2008) that the Forum had acquired a global dimension and taken a central place in Russia’s economic life.
The Forum will take place for the 16th time on June 21-23. It was called “the Russian Davos” at one point but then it surpassed the Swiss forum in many respects.
It will be held under the “Effective Leadership” motto this year. Putin is scheduled to speak at a plenary session on June 21.
The Forum “is rightfully regarded as an authoritative expert floor for discussing pressing global economic problems and traditionally brings together the heads of state and government, members of the political and business elite,” Putin wrote in his address to the Forum participants and guests.
Minister of Economic Development Stanislav Voskrensensky said that about 200 CEOs and some 5,000 guests from 87 countries will attend the Forum, including Macedonian Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski, Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari, former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, Finnish President Sauli Niinistlo, Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga. More than 30 countries will be represented by ministers.
Putin believes that the Forum’s participants will have to discuss “key issues related to the minimisation of the consequences of the global financial crisis and prevention of its new wave, and discuss the most effective measures to strengthen energy security, regulate financial markets, and increase social responsibility of business.”
The president expects “special attention to be paid to large-scale reforms in Russia, its technological and innovative development, and improvement of the investment policy”.
Putin will come to the Forum after the G20 Summit in Mexico. In 2013, a G20 summit will be held in St. Petersburg on September 5-6, and will be preceded by the 17th St. Petersburg International Economic Forum.
A concept of the Russian presidency in the Group of Twenty is now being drafted.
In addition to plenary session, Putin may also meet with the heads of leading energy companies, investment funds and some of his foreign colleagues. He will have talks with Kissinger and He Guoqiang, Politburo Standing Committee member of CPC Central Committee, who is leading the Chinese delegation to the Forum.
Energy issues will dominate Putin’s talks with 50 heads of leading foreign and Russian energy companies and Global Energy 2012 Prize winners. He will speak about prospects for the development of the Russian energy sector.
The president will also attend be present at the signing of several agreements on energy cooperation with Rosneft.