The President noted the need to carefully calculate the resources allocated for financing socially important obligations, specifically financing of high-technology medical treatment.
The meeting focused on improving programmes for supporting small and medium-sized businesses.
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President of Russia Dmitry Medvedev: Good afternoon, colleagues,
Today we will discuss budget policy, including particular policy lines of importance for our country and our society’s development.
“Our decisions must be balanced, carefully calculated, and able to guarantee that budget money will be spent rationally. We do not have money to spare.”
There is less than a month to go now until October 1 – the date by which the draft three-year budget must be submitted to the State Duma. We have discussed the budget priorities at various meetings and the Government has been working closely on these matters of course. The main outlines are already in place and were set out clearly enough, I hope, in the Budget Address.
Our decisions must be balanced, carefully calculated, and able to guarantee that budget money will be spent rationally. As you know, we do not have money to spare.
We must be aware of the consequences the various measures we take in different areas will have, know what effect they will have on economic growth, our competitiveness, and the investment climate, and base any decisions on new budget spending commitments on these considerations. Of course, all decisions taken must also be backed up with the corresponding resources and implementation mechanisms.
“Needed funds must be earmarked for financing programmes for supporting small and medium-sized businesses and on-going training programmes for engineers.”
I also draw the Government’s attention to the need to calculate as accurately as possible the money required for important social spending – but this does not mean cutting spending. There are a number of issues that are especially relevant today and have become the subject of much discussion. I have spoken of these things to the Government already, and mention it again now. These issues include financing for high-technology medical treatment. This is a complex area, certainly, but we must not allow a repeat of the situation in which the money has run out before the year is over and the quotas cannot be fulfilled. Clearly, there should be better calculation and forecasting. This situation is to be corrected.
The needed funds also must be earmarked for financing programmes for supporting small and medium-sized businesses. One of the objectives of these programmes is to develop the human resources base for technological development and economic modernisation through on-going training programmes for engineers. Money also must be earmarked here for grants for young scientists and postgraduate students carrying promising research in the priority economic modernisation areas.
I have given a number of important instructions, and I want us to discuss the various matters in the different areas now.
Let’s begin work.