The meeting was attended by Chief of Staff of the Presidential Executive Office Anton Vaino, First Deputy Prime Minister Andrei Belousov, Deputy Prime Minister – Chief of the Government Staff Dmitry Grigorenko, Deputy Prime Minister Marat Khusnullin, Presidential Aide Maxim Oreshkin, Finance Minister Anton Siluanov, Presidential Plenipotentiary Envoy to the Central Federal District Igor Shchegolev, Governor of the Chelyabinsk Region – Chairman of the State Council Commission on the Economy and Finance Alexei Teksler, and Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin.
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President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon, colleagues,
The Government of the Russian Federation has done a great job preparing the main financial document, the main financial law of the country – the state budget for next year and the subsequent two years, that is, for the next three-year period. Today we will hold the final meeting on this matter, which is being attended by a representative of one of our regions, namely Governor of the Chelyabinsk Region Alexei Teksler, who chairs the State Council Commission on the Economy and Finance.
I would like to say that we have already discussed Russia’s socioeconomic development forecast for the near future. This forecast has been used as the basis for the budget’s revenues and spending and determines the basic parameters of the country’s main financial document.
On the other hand, the global economic situation remains, as we know very well, unstable and turbulent, which is why we have agreed to keep in focus and to pay special attention to the dynamic of macroeconomic indicators. This is important both during the adoption of the law on the budget and, of course, during its implementation, so that we can promptly make amendments and improvements to the economic, infrastructure and social development programmes and, whenever possible, launch additional support measures for our citizens, primarily families with children, just as we did this year. I am referring, in part, to the one-time payments for families with schoolchildren, as well as to all Russian pensioners, military personnel, cadets and law enforcement officials.
I will tell you about this in greater detail, but first I would like to emphasise that this targeted support is an additional part of our systemic work aimed at increasing people’s incomes. We will continue to increase pensions in the next few years. The funds for this indexation have been earmarked in the budget.
Apart from this, decisions have been taken to increase the service pay of employees of law enforcement agencies – the Interior Ministry, the Federal Penitentiary Service, the Federal Customs Service, the National Guard, and others. Over a period of the next two years, the total amount of their pay will be growing at a rate of nine percent per year. In this way, we will reduce the income gap between the law enforcement employees and the Defence Ministry service personnel, which has emerged over the past years. All of us are well aware of this [fact] and have agreed to reduce this gap.
Besides, in 2023, we will raise the pay indexation rates by an additional five percent for all military service personnel and law enforcement employees. I would like to ask [everyone] to abide by these reference points.
Of course, we remain focused – as we have repeatedly said, I would like to emphasise this once again – on supporting families with children. This year, I have suggested several new measures on this score, including an allowance for expectant mothers in need, childcare sick leave payments for children of up to eight years equal to an average wage, as well as an allowance for a child aged between 8 and 17, who is brought up by a single parent, or if a low-income family is entitled to alimony by a court decision. The allocations for these payments have also been included in the new budget.
While we are at it, let me reiterate that we must create an integrated system to support families with children within the next few years. I would like to stress it once again: we have repeatedly discussed this. Generally, the rate of what should be done is quite clear and, of course, we will have to do this starting from the moment a mother-to-be is expecting her baby right up to after her child graduates from school.
A separate important task is creating a comfortable modern environment for citizens. As far as it concerns the development of towns and settlements, we are also intent on achieving great goals. Primarily I am referring here to speeding up the current programme of relocation from dilapidated housing. I have already mentioned this many times but I would just like to stress it once again: we must rescue people from the slums. In this connection, we must launch a new programme covering houses that were recognised as substandard as of January 2021. Their tenants should start getting high-quality modern housing right from the beginning of next year. Please factor this into the draft budget.
We agreed to discuss these and other matters from the previous meeting. Let us do this today.
But in conclusion I would like to once again emphasise this: we must fully tap the potential of the federal budget for the next three years as a development budget. Precisely as a development budget, as a powerful tool for achieving the national goals in the economy as a whole, in infrastructure, environment, social sphere, and in increasing incomes. This year, we have substantially increased the budget spending for these purposes and it will also grow during the next few years or so.
I would like to ask the heads of the Government, federal ministries and agencies, and the country’s regions to prioritise the attainment of national goals that we have set ourselves. It is necessary to focus all the needed forces and resources on this task. And, of course, we will constantly monitor the implementation of the plans we have evolved. If need be, we will certainly adopt additional decisions based on the objective picture and the situation in localities and regions.
And now let’s move on to our agenda. I would like to give the floor to Mr Alexei Teksler, head of the State Council Commission on Economy and Finance.
Please, Mr Teksler.