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Putin highlights domestic, foreign policies

October 02, 2013, 18:29 UTC+3

Russia's President addresses investment forum “Russia Calling!”

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Photo ITAR-TASS/ Mikhail Klimentyev

Photo ITAR-TASS/ Mikhail Klimentyev

MOSCOW, October 2 (Itar-Tass) - Russian President Vladimir Putin did not rule out a possible reduction of a state stake in the banks with less than 50 percent state capital in the future.

“I believe that it is possible to reduce the state stake lower than 50 percent in the future,” he said at the investment forum “Russia Calling!”.

The president noted that more than 1,000 banks operate in Russia, but big banks with state capital are few. He named Sberbank, VTB, Gazprombank and others among them. Almost all other banks are private.

“I can assume that we will reduce it to lower than 50 percent, but we should advance to this goal very carefully,” Putin noted.

Economic growth

The Russian government will always set ambitious tasks for economic growth proceeding from a real situation. “Proceeding from a real situation we will seek to attain those goals that we set for ourselves despite the difficulties that take place in the world and our economy,” Putin noted. The president added that this will happen mainly thanks to “infrastructure changes, which we obviously lack, this is a very difficult task, but we will seek to fulfil it.”

The president also named higher labour productivity, lower costs in state-run companies, making budget expenditures more efficient and so on and so forth. “We hope that all this will yield an effect needed for us,” the president pledged.

Presidential decrees

“Going by realities in which we live, work proceeds satisfactorily,” Putin told the VTB capital’s Russia Calling! investment forum. Putin said that “since Yuly many government structures and departments have been giving more attention to the work towards reaching specific targets.” “Certainly, one cannot be satisfied 100 percent with everything, there are matters requiring a more thorough approach and closer attention on my part and on the part of the government leadership. We will be doing this,” Putin said. “On the whole, this work is satisfactory,” he added.

Putin recalled a number of problems that still exist: high budget expenditures and low labour productivity. “These are the essential things that we should deal with,” the head of state noted. He also recalled the decision to freeze the growth of tariffs on services of natural monopolies. “We believe this will have a certain effect from the viewpoint of targeting inflation and preserving other macroeconomic indicators,” the head of state stressed.

Merging courts

Russia does not set the task to merge fully the courts of general jurisdiction and arbitration courts, Putin said.

To avoid simultaneous work on the same issues when “unfortunately, some cases occur today when the litigating parties are disputing in the courts of general jurisdiction and the party not satisfied with the court ruling turns with the same issue in the arbitration system and there an absolutely opposite ruling may be passed,” the president said.

“Certainly, this does not present our judicial system in a favourable light,” Putin acknowledged.

“One of problems, which we should solve and work on it constantly, is the improvement of judicial and legal system in general. It should be transparent, clear-cut, effective and controllable,” Putin noted.

The president noted that “we have no plans to merge fully the courts of general jurisdiction and arbitration courts.”

Untangling the Syrian crisis 

Russia has every ground to believe the process of untangling the crisis in Syria is on the right track, the president stated.

“That’s our common achievement and a result of our collective efforts,” Putin said. “I’m thankful to my counterparts who were initially inclined to a solution through the use of force but then agreed with the importance of undertaking every effort necessary of peace settlement.”

“If we continue acting in the same manner in the future, there’ll be no need to use force but, quite naturally, much is to be done yet and all of us will have to work actively in that direction,” he said.

He underlined once again the presence of “only two legitimate methods of resolving the problem - by passing a decision at the UN Security Council or by reacting to an aggression.”

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