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President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Colleagues,
We met as a bigger group the day before yesterday to discuss economic development and credit and monetary policy. Today, in this context, I would like to discuss credit and monetary policy with the Governor of the Central Bank and Finance Minister.
Let me say here that under our law, the Central Bank is an independent financial institution with its own powers, and nothing has changed in this respect. We are here only to exchange views and look at how the situation might develop, in order to better coordinate our work in general.
Seeing as Ms Nabiullina is here, let me remind you once again that we are set next week to discuss privatisation and our plans in this area, including for this year. There is a view that some financial institutions should also be part of this privatisation process.
The Central Bank is the main shareholder, the key shareholder, in our country’s biggest bank – Sberbank. I would like to hear the Central Bank Governor’s view on this issue, on the possible privatisation of a stake in Sberbank.
Governor of the Central Bank Elvira Nabiullina: I think it is not yet the right time to consider privatising a stake in Sberbank, because public trust in this bank is in large part due to the fact that the state holds the controlling stake, the state is in control.
Public opinion surveys, including recent surveys that asked various questions, show this too. They show that the state should hold on to its controlling stake in Sberbank for now.
Vladimir Putin: First of all, I agree completely. Second, I think that we will not come back to this matter in the medium term. We will lay it aside in our discussions on the privatisation plan for 2016 and will not examine it. I agree with you on this.
Let’s discuss the subject on our agenda now.