President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon, friends,
I am very pleased to be with you today as Russia, together with the residents of Crimea and the people of Sevastopol, celebrates the fifth anniversary of the historic referendum on Crimea’s reunification with its historical homeland, with Russia. This is a time when we have good reason to remember the lyrics of the well-known song about Sevastopol being a city of glory for Russian sailors.
However, there are many other components. I have just visited the Malakhov Kurgan, where we also recalled history, and also spoke a little about future development, of course. But we now have a unique opportunity to discuss this in more detail. I will try to answer your questions, if you have any, but also to listen to your views of what is happening, and your comments.
I think it is obvious how much has been done over the past five years, but I immediately want to say this: everything that has been done and is being done now is of a fundamental nature and is a long cycle project. But development is impossible without it, because no area can develop without a certain amount of, say, electricity or heat – it would be impossible to connect new consumers, and if there are no new consumers then there is no development, or without transport infrastructure.
We still have to work on the water supply and so on, and all these are long cycle projects, but these things should form groundwork for direct local development projects – we must think about implementing this, primarily manufacturing, tourism, education, and science. Here in Crimea there are very deep roots for all these industries, and of course nationwide results can be achieved here.
I will finish my address now and listened to you with pleasure.
To be continued.