During the reception at the Grand Kremlin Palace, Mr Putin said that the adoption of the Russian anthem was a landmark event. “We have overcome a conflict between the past and the present, and will enter the new millennium with a new anthem,” the President said.
“Russia has achieved a great deal this year. We have chosen the right direction. The country’s economy and people’s welfare are growing, the nationhood strengthening. Russia has an open foreign policy, forging new friendships and renewing old ones,” the President said.
Addressing politicians, members of the Government, scientists and artists, Mr Putin proposed a toast to those who made 2000 a year of stability and solidarity in Russia.
The first official performance of the National Anthem closed the President’s speech.