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Russian government’s anti-crisis plan outlined in parliament

January 30, 2015, 18:36 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The government’s anti-crisis plan stipulates support for the Russian industry, banking sector and the fulfillment of social obligations undertaken by the state, the first deputy PM Igor Shuvalov says
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Igor Shuvalov

Igor Shuvalov

© Artyom Korotayev/TASS

MOSCOW, January 30. /TASS/. First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov outlined the government’s anti-crisis plan worth 2.332 trillion rubles ($32.6 billion) in parliament on Friday.

The first vice-premier rejected the allegations of confusion inside the government, adding the Cabinet of Ministers acted as a unified team.

"Even those disagreements that were inside the economic and social blocs were pushed aside for the sake of common cause," he said.

The current crisis is the result of internal problems that have accumulated over a long period and "unprecedented external pressure," the first vice-premier said.

The government’s anti-crisis plan stipulates support for the Russian industry, banking sector and the fulfillment of social obligations undertaken by the state, Shuvalov said.

The government’s anti-crisis plan also aims to maintain macro-economic stability in the country, he said.

"We can give money from reserve funds as much as necessary and possible for keeping the macro-economic situation stable. But we must not unbalance the results we have achieved with difficulty over 15 years of complex work," the first vice-premier said.

The Russian government is ready for dialog with lawmakers on the most acute issues, Shuvalov said.

Specifically, the government will hold consultations with the State Duma (the lower house of Russia’s parliament) on the possibility of postponing the timeframe of financing large projects. The government will also consider reducing operational costs of state-owned companies, allocate additional funds to regions, if necessary, and continue developing small and medium business, and will also fight unjustified food price hikes, the first vice-premier said.

Russia’s anti-crisis plan approved

Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said on Tuesday the Russian authorities had approved the country’s anti-crisis plan, which required no additional spending from the federal budget.

"This plan stipulates no increase in budget spending. Moreover, we expect the volume of expenditures to become less than planned," he said.

The anti-crisis plan stipulates that the government should pursue adequate budget policy to reach a deficit-free budget by 2017 at the oil price expected at $70 per barrel, the finance minister said.

The government also has the task to avoid spending sovereign reserves thoughtlessly, Siluanov said.

"The plan is intended for about one year and stipulates the preparation of new structural reforms so that we can have a new quality of state governance, a new quality of the budget and can keep our reserves instead of spending them in a year or two," he said.

The anti-crisis plan will be implemented in three key areas: spurring economic growth, providing support to individual industries and ensuring social stability.

Russian Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich said at the Davos Economic Forum last week that the government’s anti-crisis plan stipulated support for systemically important companies in industry, the energy sector, agriculture, transport, communications and other sectors.

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