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MOSCOW, April 14. / TASS /. Russia’s defense procurement is not shrinking, it is the only the budgeting of law enforcement agencies which is being reduced due to budgetary constraints, Russian President Vladimir Putin said during his annual televised Q&A session officially known as "The Direct Line with Vladimir Putin."
"First of all I would like to say that the defense procurement is not shrinking, we cut the budgeting of the defense ministry and nearly all law enforcement agencies. Yes, we do it due to well-known budgetary constraints, and it is absolutely natural thing in the modern conditions," - he said.
The president stressed that it is necessary to "limit appetites of our law enforcement agencies just like we limit the appetites of our civil agencies."
"We should make use of budget resources more effective. But these restrictions concern the current activities not the defense procurement, which should be implemented on full scale," he said.
The president has urged to start thinking of how to provide the load for Russian defense companies after the government defense order passes its peak in several years.
"The peak of orders and the peak of companies’ capacity utilization are right now and in the next year. Then it will decline as our Armed Forces are provided with new equipment that should be brought to 70%," the President said.
We should already start thinking now how to load these companies in future, Putin added.
There is a need to consider conversion of companies, the president said. "We assume in the course of refitting companies with modern equipment - about 3 trillion rubles ($45.3 bln) are provided for this purpose - that equipment will be bought making possible to use it within the framework of conversion work in future," Putin said.