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MOSCOW, December 12, 12:19 /ITAR-TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin believes that Constitutional stability is one of the basic principles of the state. "The constitutional framework should be stable; it foremost concerns the chapter on citizens' rights and freedoms," he said in his annual state-of-the-nation address to the Federal Assembly in the Kremlin on Thursday.
It is a double jubilee address: the 20th in newest Russian history and the 10th made by Putin.
"We're not disclosing the content of the address; it's done by the president as he reads it," presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov underlined to Itar-Tass on Wednesday.
However, he did note that the address "is always a very broad document containing medium-term, long-term and conceptual tasks."
When asked if the address would have a section concerning the Fundamental Law, Peskov replied: "it's no coincidence that the address is made on Constitution Day."
The address is the key program document of Russian authorities focusing the society on the key problems and mechanisms of their solution.
The Constitutional framework should be stable, and amendments are only needed in order to overcome legal uncertainty, as for example in merging the Supreme Court and the Supreme Arbitration Court, Russian President Vladimir Putin said.
"I'm confident that the Constitutional framework should be stable; in the first place it concerns Chapter 2 of the Constitution on the rights and freedoms of person and citizen," Putin said. "These provisions are inviolable."
"But life does not stand still, and the Constitutional process cannot be viewed as fully completed," the Russian leader underlined. "Fine adjustments required by life itself are possible and sometimes necessary."
As an example, Putin reminded about the proposal to merge the Supreme Court and the Supreme Arbitration Court. "Their interpretations of laws sometimes differ today. This results in legal uncertainty," the president said. In his view, the merger of the two courts will put judicial practice on one course.
Russia’s president spoke for development of political competition in the country and for wide public discussion of key issues.
“I believe it is important that many new parties have asserted themselves, wining seats in municipal and regional bodies of authority, they have laid a good foundation for the participation in future election campaigns. I am sure that they will be worthy competitors to the political old-timers,” the president said.
Multi-national peace needs to be preserved and protected against immoral people who have no respect to traditions – their own or foreign, Putin said.
“Inter-ethnic tension is provoked not by representatives of some peoples, but people who do not have any culture, the respect to the traditions, both their own ones and those of the others. This is some kind of amoral international, which includes reckless and impudent natives of several southern regions, corrupt law enforcers, who give cover to ethnic criminal groups and the so-called Russian nationalists, the so-called separatists, who are prepared to take any tragedy as a reason for vandalism and bloody bath,” the Russian leader stated.
Putin proposed organizing a volunteer movement to assist with medical care.
Russia’s President Vladimir Putin has proposed a broad discussion of a law on public control. He also proposed to promote the human rights movements in the country.
“Today’s Russia stands in need of a broad public discussion, the one that brings about practical results, a discussion that turns public initiatives into state policies,” he said in the annual State of the Nation Address to both houses of Russian parliament. “Society should control their execution.”
“I think all the bills, key state decisions and strategic plans should pass the so-called ‘zero reading’ in which nongovernmental organizations and other institutes of civic society will take place,” Putin said.
In January-October of the current year, Russia registered the natural population growth for the first time since 1991, Russia’s President said.
The president is sure the trend may be irreversible by, among others, the program of housing construction. Putin suggested calling it “Housing for Russian Family.
Along with this, he admitted that “slow rates of housing construction development are explained for by heavy corruption in the sphere."
Russia’s President Vladimir Putin is dissatisfied with the fact that an effective system to support non-raw-material export has not begun, and demands from the government and the Agency of Strategic Investments to offer by March 1, 2014 a new roadmap on development of the export.
“A system of the kind has not begun working. Many administrative barriers still exist. An export license processing takes over 20 days. Compare with six days in the US, eight in Canada or South Korea. All these aspects should be considered in a new roadmap on supporting the export,” the president said.
“I am addressing the government and the Agency of Strategic Investments to offer it by Marc h 1, 2014,” he said.
Vladimir Putin said it necessary that scientific projects are co-financed by the government and businesses, adding the domestic demand for scientific works should grow.
“The basic reasons for lower economic growth are not of international, but of domestic origins. In the GDP, Russia is among the world’s five leading economies, which is good of course, but as for labor productivity - we are behind the leading countries by two-three times. We should overcome actively the gap. For that, we should use fully the new growth factors - high quality of professional training and flexible labor market, favorable investment climate and modern technologies. I order the government jointly with the Russian Academy of Sciences to correct the plans for development of sciences and technique. The Russian Science Foundation should also use these priorities in its work,” he said. “As for applied research, the work should focus on technology platforms. I suggest funding from core special purpose programs is used for support of that research. It is important that the projects are based on co-financing from the state and from businesses.
Vladimir Putin said that offshore zones still have to be taxed under Russian laws. “Taxes on earnings of the companies registered in offshore jurisdictions but having a Russian owner - a final beneficiary - are to be levied under Russian tax rules,” Putin said. “And taxes are to be paid to the Russian budget.” A system is to be worked out for recovering this money, he added.
Companies registered in foreign jurisdictions must be denied state support and government guarantees, he said.
"The companies registered in foreign jurisdictions cannot use measures of state support, including Vnesheconombank loans and state guarantees," Putin said.
He added that these companies should not have access to government contracts or contracts with government participation either.
If a company wishes to enjoy preferential terms and state support and receive profits working in this country it should register in Russian jurisdiction, the president said.
Russia’s President Vladimir Putin called on regional authorities to introduce throughout the country two-year tax holidays for new small businesses.
“Not all governors will enjoy the idea,” the president told the Federal Assembly. “Next day already they /new businesses/ will bring additional revenues in support of regional and municipal budgets,” Putin said.
Resources of the state and of private businesses should be channeled into large-scale infrastructure projects, including the development of Siberian and Far-Eastern regions, President Vladimir Putin said.
He said intensified development of Siberia and the Far East was Russia’s national priority through to the very end of the 21st century.
Putin also put forward a task to step up the monitoring of the quality of operations of companies and organizations controlled by the government.
The senior executives at these entities usually have nice earnings and that is why control over their operations should be raised to an appropriate level.
This implies, for instance, administrative and material liability for the disruption of tasks specified by the government, Putin said.
Russian President has set a task to the country’s government to create a network of territories for faster development in East Siberia and Russia’s Far East.
“Five-year tax holidays on the income tax, the extraction tax, except for oil and gas that are a profitable industry, the taxes on land and property and a preferential rate of insurance premiums that is very important for highly technological productions should be provided for new enterprises situated in such zones,” the Russian president said.
“The terms for business will be competitive there, with key business centres, the procedures of getting permits for construction, the connection to the electric power grid and customs clearance. We will use actively the capacities of the Development Fund of the Far East to resolve the issue of infrastructure on these territories. Before July 1, 2014, it should be decided, where such territories will be set up in concrete and all legal regulatory acts required for their work should be adopted. I ask the prime minister to put this work under his personal control,” the Russian president noted.
Russia’s President Vladimir Putin called for tighter control over the purpose of visiting the Russian Federation by foreign citizens and to clear the situation with the foreigners, who are in Russia already.
“The authorities should be aware of their purposes and term of visits to Russia,” the president said.
“At the same time, it is important to solve the issue of the foreign citizens, who have entered this country on a visa-free basis and have been in the country without any clear purposes; as if so - they, most probably, do have purposes, but the authorities are not aware of them,” he said.
“The term of their visit should be limited, and for those who violate the rules, entering Russia should be banned depending on the violation for between three to ten years,” Putin said.
“It is necessary to bring to order the employment of foreign citizens, who arrive in the Russian Federation on a visa-free basis, employers should be responsible for use of foreign labour force, and, of course, if they live and work in Russia, use the systems of education, healthcare, they should undertake certain responsibilities, pay the taxes,” he said.
Putin suggests settling Iranian nuclear issues to guarantee security of all countries, including Israel. Russia’s President is sure further work on a solution, which will guarantee a peaceful development of the nuclear energy in Iran and the security in the region, should continue.
“It is necessary to continue the patient work on a wider solution, which will guarantee Iran’s irrevocable rights for development the peaceful nuclear energy and security of all the countries in the region, including Israel,” he said in the state-of-the-nation address.
Russia does not dictate anything to others, but is prepared to push ahead with integration projects with Ukraine if Kiev agrees. Russia is ready, in case an initiative comes from Kiev, to continue the work on the level of experts on Ukraine’s joining several agreements in the framework of the Customs Union, Russia’s President Vladimir Putin said.
“We are not insisting on anything, but if our friends wish to work jointly, we are ready to continue the work on the level of experts,” the president said.
Putin expressed confidence the realistic achievements of the Eurasian integration “will only raise the interest to it from our other neighbours, including from the Ukrainian counterparts.”
Long before the current events in Kiev, beginning from May of the current year, “Ukraine expressed the interest in presenting as an observer at all the meetings of the “three”, in participating in discussions, and several times earlier confirmed it was interested in joining the Customs Union’s some agreements,” he said.
The president stressed the Eurasian integration project “is based on equality and realistic economic interests.”
“We shall continue to promote the Eurasian process, without opposing it to other integration projects, including, of course, the European experienced integration project,” Putin said.
Russia will base its activities “on our complementarities, and, of course, we shall continue the work with our European friends on drafting a new basic Agreement,” he said.
Russian President Vladimir Putin asked the Federal Assembly to give priority to the review of the agreement on the Eurasian Economic Union.
"We hope that the coordination of the text of the treaty will be finished by May 1, 2014, and that it will be submitted to the parliaments of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan," Putin said.
"I'm asking you, my esteemed colleagues, to review this document and support it on a priority basis," he said.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has urged the states that hope to get military advantage over Russia to shed their illusions. “Nobody should cherish illusions of getting military advantage over Russia,” Putin said.
“Russia is developing innovative solutions to reinforce its nuclear triad,” the president said. He set the task “to create a global reconnaissance and target acquisition system, involving the aerospace grouping.”
“In the next decade, order books of the national defense industry enterprises will be full, and defense spending will reach 23 trillion rubles,” said the Russian president.
Russia does not aspire to be a superpower and does not seek global or regional hegemony, President Vladimir Putin said.
“We do not impose our patronage and do not try to teach others how to live,” he said.
At the same time Putin expressed confidence that in the modern world “Russia’s historical responsibility not only as a key guarantor of global stability, but also as a country that consistently protects its approaches to values, including those in international relations, is growing.”
“We will try to be a leader, defending the intentional law, promoting respect to national sovereignty, independence and national identity,” Putin said. “This is quite explainable for Russia with its great history and culture, age-old experience, not with the so-called genderless and infertile tolerance, but with common and organic life of different people within one country.
Russia’s term of rotating presidency in the Group of Eight Most Industrialized Nations, as well as the summits of BRICS and the Shanghai Cooperation Organizations /SCO/, which this country is due to host in 2015, will be guided by the principles of joint work in the interests of common, equal and indivisible security, President Vladimir Putin stated.
“Russia is ready to do joint work with its partners in the interests of ensuring common, equal and indivisible security,” he said. “Our presidency in the G8 will be targeted at the solution of acute nonproliferation problems, counteraction to international terrorism, and struggle against drugs trafficking.”
“Also, we plan to be guided by the same principles in the process of preparing for the summit meetings of BRICS and the SCO, which Russia will host in 2015,” Putin said.
Russia's President set the task of creating a global system of intelligence and targeting involving satellite group.