President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Mr Vorobyev, let’s take a look at the region’s socioeconomic situation.
But before we start, I would like to hear about the situation in the agriculture sector. I know Moscow Region is an industrial region, but I would prefer to start with agriculture today. I know that you built 12 new facilities in this sector last year.
Governor of Moscow Region Andrei Vorobyev: Yes.
Vladimir Putin: And you invested 12.3 billion rubles in the sector. You are continuing this work this year and will invest around 16 billion rubles. I would like to begin with this today.
Secondly, I looked through the documents and I saw that you have encountered certain problems with land issues related to municipal development, forestland and other categories of land.
Andrei Vorobyev: Yes, this is the case.
Vladimir Putin: I would like to hear your views on these issues and what solutions you propose. Please, go ahead.
Andrei Vorobyev: Mr President, Moscow Region is primarily an industrial region, but of the three Order of Lenin awards the region received, two were in the agricultural sector. Industry is still the economy’s backbone, as you know, and it has grown by 14 percent and is making us happy with the profit tax revenue it brings in, which broadens our opportunities.
As for agriculture, the federal programme’s support has helped us to attract investors, major investors from Russia and abroad. They are investing in livestock, dairy farming, and greenhouse agriculture. Demand is very high today for Russian produce.
You supported the initiative to bring land onto the market, and we now have plans to bring an additional 70,000 hectares of land or so onto the market every year. In other words, in 3–4 years, every bit of land in Moscow Region will be put to work. This is very important because it means that remote parts of the region will get a new life and create new jobs, and this is our priority.
As for the land issue, we have discussed it and I made a report at the State Council. The problem arises with land that turns out to be classified as forestland. I would like to speak today about the nuances of the instructions you issued and the need to adopt a law on forest amnesty, which would enable towns to develop and approve urban development plans.
Vladimir Putin: What is this forest amnesty, exactly?
Andrei Vorobyov: The problem is that legal entities and physical individuals often have title deeds proving their ownership of land, but it turns out because of mistakes made when cadastral work was carried out, their land was classified as forestland. We need to make a decision so that people do not have to go to court in each case, but will be able to make use of their land, while the authorities would be able to draft their urban development plans, because at the moment, the coordinates here are not accurate. It was this issue I wanted to bring to your attention.
Vladimir Putin: Fine.