MOSCOW, January 19. /TASS/. Former Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has explained his government’s resignation by the tasks of carrying out political reforms in the country and the factor of time.
"First and the most important what I said when we met with President [Vladimir Putin] after he had delivered his address [to the Federal Assembly] on January 15 this year is that the address outlined such large-scale tasks on reforming the political system, and to a certain extent even changing the balance of powers in the country - this refers to the government, the parliament, partly the president and the judicial system - that in order to make all these decisions, the president should have absolutely a free hand in discussing them and taking them without a backward glance to other factors, including the factor of government," Medvedev said in his interview with Channel One.
Speaking about the second reason, Medvedev mentioned the factor of time. Medvedev recalled that he had served as the chairman of the government for nearly eight years. "This is a huge term. This happened for the first time in modern Russia," the former prime minister said.
"New government should focus on income growth"
Medvedev said he is generally satisfied by his cabinet’s work in 2012-2020 despite some vulnerable decisions and unsolved issues. The former prime minister noted that the key goal of the new cabinet led by Mikhail Mishustin would be to increase citizens’ real income.
"I will put this bluntly as a person who has been responsible for the government’s work for nearly eight years, in general I’m satisfied how things have been going and how the highest executive authority has worked," Medvedev said, stressing that "it’s up to people to give final assessments."
Medvedev noted that his government had been forced to make really challenging and vulnerable, but necessary decisions such as a pension reform.
"There were also unsolved tasks <...> I mean that [our citizens’] real disposable income nearly did not grow. This is certainly the outcome of the general economic situation, but this needs to be done. Everyone is saying about this and President [Vladimir Putin] spoke about this in his address [to the Federal Assembly]. And this is probably, a key task for the new government," he stressed.
On January 15, Medvedev and his government resigned after Putin had delivered his address to the Federal Assembly. Medvedev was appointed as deputy chairman of the Russian Security Council, while other cabinet members were instructed to continue carrying out their duties.
The president nominated Mikhail Mishustin, the head of Russia’s Federal Tax Service, for prime minister. On January 16, the lower house of Russia’s parliament, the State Duma, backed the candidate at its plenary session and Putin immediately signed a decree appointing Mikhail Mishustin as the country’s prime minister. Soon, Mishustin is due to present his proposals on the structure and members of the new cabinet.