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Putin: Sochi Olympic sites to serve to people for more than 100 years

February 08, 2014, 6:43 UTC+3 MOSCOW
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MOSCOW, February 08, 6:29 /ITAR-TASS/. Facilities built for the Winter Olympics in the southern Russian city of Sochi will serve to people for a hundred years and longer, Russian President Vladimir Putin said in a documentary titled “The Philosophy of the Soft Way” aired on TV channel Rossiya-1 on Friday.

“This is all for people,” the president said in reply to a question how much Olympic construction cost. “I pin high hopes on people to use all these facilities for one hundred and more years,” Putin said.

He explained that he speaks about infrastructure and 15 sport sites, which had been built for the Olympics.

“Their total cost is 214 billion roubles (around $6.2 billion), including 100 billion roubles (around $2.9 billion) that are purely state monetary funds, the rest of it is private investment,” the president recalled. Putin noted that not a single rouble was invested in hotel construction from the budget, state authorities invested in highways, gas and electric power supplies.

“But this is what belongs to people in the full sense of the word,” Putin noted. The president gave as an example construction of a railway that was decided to launch even amid the crisis, “I even decided that if we do not do it now, this will never be done.”

The president noted importance of support that the Russians gave to the Olympic project. “As we do not see today such support to Olympic movement in some countries which receive too much attention. And the International Olympic Committee realised that people, Russian citizens, give this support in Russia. This was also a major factor that helped us to win,” the president said.

Asked about the main rival the president replied, “"I shall not speak for myself. I shall speak for Russia. Russia has got only one rival - our land itself, our certain internal problems, troubles.”

In comments on a journalist's remark about corruption, Putin noted that "when projects of this kind are being implemented - whatever the place - there always arise questions of this sort.” "Of course, any contractor always seeks to earn as much as possible while the job of the state is to minimize state spending," the president said.

According to Putin, his "purpose now is to reveal drawbacks" and if he arrives at some place and begins to check up and supervise situation, he speaks precisely about that. This is why "one may get an impression that there is nothing good, but it is not so at all".

"Simply, to secure that we get at the finish what we need, it is essential in the process of work always to rake out problems, draw attention to them and react in time. Then there will be the expected result, a positive one, for centuries," the head of state added.

He categorically disagreed with pronouncements that Russian people cannot build anything normally. "This is slander against Russian people who have built such a state as Russia, the largest state in the world,” Putin noted.

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