President Vladimir Putin (to acting director of Russian Arctic National Park AlexanderKirillov): Mr Kirillov, as our host, what have you got to say?
Alexander Kirillov: We have shown you only a small part of what we have here. The Arctic, Franz Josef Land, Novaya Zemlya and the entire territory of the park are extremely diverse. I tried to tell you briefly about many different projects, but I did not have time to be thorough.
For me, this is a labour of love. I am a lucky man, in a way, because my job coincides with my favourite pastime, along with research and management functions. So, if possible, I would like to invite you to the Arctic in summer to show you how beautiful it is, not only in the snow, but in summer as well. You will see poppies in bloom, buttercups, rockfoil – all kinds of flowers.
Vladimir Putin: Thank you very much. Mr Medvedev and I would like to thank you for your interesting account and for the results of your work. We were spellbound listening to you during our trip. We listened with interest and pleasure. You should be writing books. I think you do write. If so, do carry on. You told us about the history, geology and everything else. However, I will remind you again that I made several labour-saving suggestions.
Alexander Kirillov: I will take them into consideration.
Vladimir Putin: We determined that some things could be done more quickly, but in fact, all this was said half-jokingly. Speaking seriously, you have done a tremendous job in difficult conditions, under Government guidance, of course –the Ministry in this case. I would like to thank you – and not only you and the Ministry, but also some other agencies are responsible for all this. I think we have managed it all together. We should go on like this, not only in the Year of the Environment.
Indeed, we did not launch the Arctic clean up in the Year of the Environment, but much earlier. It is very good that you are carrying out essential fundamental research and your routine practical duties at the same time. Your achievements are used in Russia and, as far as I know, abroad. You attract your colleagues from abroad here. They come, they observe and they participate. That is excellent. Thank you very much.