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RF 2013-15 budget to be social despite strict budget rule

September 28, 2012, 17:17 UTC+3

Medvedev pledged that “the budget has funds for raising pensions, for indexation of child benefits, for the support of people with disabilities”

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MOSCOW, September 28 (Itar-Tass) — Russia’s federal budget for 2013-2015 will be socially oriented, it will make it possible to solve development problems, and it will be less dependent on oil and gas revenues, RF Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said on Friday in his video blog that focused on the work on the state budget.

“The budget remains social, its priority is the fulfilment of social obligations to the citizens. We have not removed anything,” he said. “But the current budget preserves not only social obligations, it also provides opportunities for growth, according to the current situation, certainly.” This year, the RF government head said, the country’s main financial document has been made with taking into account the budget rule, according to which the limits of spending depends on the average price of oil over the previous years, not on the current indicators.

“This rule is strict, but it will help us to ensure internal stability and, more importantly, independence from price fluctuations on the world markets, so that we do not have to rewrite the budget, cut spending at a time when oil priced drop,” Medvedev said. At the same time, he added, “the surplus will be used to replenish the Reserve Fund.” “Only with such a budget, and it is my firm belief, we will be able to pass the complex period, maintaining the standard of living of our people that has been achieved in recent years,” the prime minister said.

Speaking of social obligations, Medvedev pledged that “the budget has funds for raising pensions, for indexation of child benefits, for the support of people with disabilities and social protection for those who lost their jobs.” The spending for raising wages of teachers of schools, colleges, universities, cultural workers and social workers is also itemised in the budget.

“An additional almost 133 billion roubles will be allocated for education and science in the next three years for this purpose, and the total spending on education will exceed 627 billion roubles,” the prime minister said. “We have kept all the spending obligations in the healthcare sphere – a huge sum of 2.5 trillion roubles will be spent for this in 2013, and the RF regions will get the money for medicaments for benefit holders, it makes about 40 billion roubles, as well as funds for other purposes, including high-technology medicine,” he added.

He also pointed out that a sum of 8 billion roubles will be allocated in 2013 for the development the leading universities alone. “And the volume of financing of state research funds, research and development of the leading universities will also grow: by 2.5 billion roubles in 2013, by 4 billion roubles in 2014, and by 6 billion roubles - in 2015,” the Russian prime minister said.

According to him, about 100 billion roubles per year will be spent on culture. “In 2013, more than 380 billion roubles will be allocated for this sphere from the common, as they say, consolidated budget,” he said.

Concluding his video address Medvedev promised that “the government will calculate every kopeck and every rouble.” “We must do it, but at the same time we will build a comfortable and modern life for all citizens of our country, our Russia,” he promised.

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