The Head of State agreed with the Prime Minister’s proposal to appoint Deputy Head of the Presidential Directorate for Social Projects Olga Vasilyeva the Minister of Education and Science.
The former Education Minister Dmitry Livanov will take up the post of Special Presidential Representative for Trade and Economic Relations with Ukraine.
* * *
President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Go ahead, Mr Medvedev.
Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev: Mr President, you decided to intensify project work in the Government. A Council has been established for this purpose and we are now implementing several new priority projects in this format in various spheres, including education.
To bring to life those ideas that have been formulated, we will need new approaches, new powers and in some cases new people. In this context, I would like to ask you, in my position as Prime Minister, to review the issue of the executives of the Ministry of Education, since it is now facing a series of new tasks. I would suggest appointing a woman, Olga Vasilyeva to replace Dmitry Livanov. She has a good service record. She is a scientist but started her career as a teacher in 1979. Later on Ms Vasilyeva worked in the Academy of Sciences and various academic institutions. She has experience in government service, in both the Government and Presidential Executive Office. She is a balanced and experienced person and I believe she is capable of carrying out these new tasks.
As for our colleague, Mr Livanov, his experience should be put to use because he introduced many useful innovations into the Ministry of Education, in part when he was streamlining the educational system, developing secondary and higher education and reforming the Academy of Sciences, which was a fairly difficult task at the time.
I know that you have ideas on how to use his experience. I would like to request that we discuss them.
Vladimir Putin: Fine, Mr Medvedev. This is what we will do.
I agree that the Ministry of Education is facing new tasks. A large part of work has been completed. Mr Livanov did much during this stage. He is a man of character and consistent in implementing his own and the Government’s decisions.
It goes without saying that his experience can and must be used in other spheres. He will be offered a job as a special representative of the President of the Russian Federation on trade and economic ties with Ukraine.
He is not a military man. If our colleagues are frightened by people who once served in the army, they should know that Mr Livanov is a strictly civilian person with vast experience in Government work. I think his personal and business qualities will help develop and revive trade and economic ties with our neighbor, which is vital for us.
As for a diplomatic representative, an ambassador, we will discuss this issue separately. Meanwhile, development of trade and economic ties should always be in the focus of our attention. I am convinced that Mr Livanov will play a positive role here. He can do it, and I hope he will.