The meeting was attended by the elected heads of the republics of Adygea, Buryatia, Karelia, Mari El, Udmurtia as well as the Vladimir, Kaliningrad, Kirov, Novgorod, Ryazan, Saratov, Sverdlovsk, Tambov, Tomsk and Yaroslavl regions.
President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon, colleagues,
First of all, I want to congratulate you on winning the election. You have shown strong and conclusive results. This shows that citizens trust you and link with you their hopes for the development of the regions and for solving the problems that concern everyone.
I would like to note that the election campaign was held openly, competitively, cleanly, without scandals, thank God, and without any resonant candidate removals. Among you are those who confirmed their authority in these elections, who were elected for a new term, and those who are taking up the post of regional head for the first time.
But I think you see your key task the same way. It is to improve the quality of people's lives, to improve the social and economic situation in the regions, and to create a solid, reliable foundation for moving forward.
Our country is currently facing a certain amount of pressure from external sources. This imposes a particular, even greater degree of responsibility on regional heads, as on leaders at every level of power, and requires even greater concentration, and consolidation of efforts for the sake of reaching the goals we are facing.
Consolidation and unity of our society is vividly manifested in its readiness to come to the aid of the new federal constituent entities and to restore peaceful life in the liberated territories. The regions collect humanitarian aid for them and take such localities and entire areas under their patronage. I want to thank everyone who is taking part in this work. I am sure that our fellow citizens feel the support they need.
Here’s another important thing I would like to mention. I ask you to follow up closely on the partial mobilisation effort being conducted in strict accordance with the law and on providing necessary assistance to the families of those mobilised. I emphasise that all the decisions that were taken, including social benefits, payments and additional allocations from regional budgets to the families of privates, sergeants and officers serving in and joining the Russian Armed Forces must be carried out without fail.
I have spoken about this repeatedly and will now say again that we must use the challenges created by foreign pressure to further Russia’s development – we have already discussed this more than once with many colleagues. We must act in the interests of strengthening our sovereignty, making full use of our domestic scientific, industrial, technological and business potential.
Of course, the Government, federal ministries and agencies are engaged in this, but much depends on governors and their teams – your teams.
In the regions, locally, it is seen more clearly which project or initiative can positively benefit the economy of that region and the country as a whole. These promising projects that meet national development goals need to be adequately supported.
Even in the harsh sanctions regime, we need to ensure the full functioning of regional economies. Overall, today you are handling this task well. Of course, the strict provision of social assistance remains at the heart of our work. We have everything we need to minimise possible losses and, ideally, put regional economies on a growth trajectory in the short and medium-term. You understand this, of course, since it is the chief factor in enhancing popular well-being, and it must be done, without fail.
I understand perfectly well that this is not an easy task. Its solution will require making out-of-the-box and bold decisions and working in even closer coordination with the Government, federal bodies and with your colleagues from other regions.
And, of course, we need to consistently and tirelessly implement the development plans and programmes that we outlined earlier. I mean the upgrade of infrastructure: transport, engineering, housing and communal services, social gasification, and the entire range of measures related to healthcare, education, improving the ecological situation, and creating a comfortable, well-maintained environment in cities and towns.
All this directly influences people’s quality of life, and it is extremely important to constantly seek feedback on all these issues, to see the situation not only from paper reports, but from people’s real opinions, to consider their responses and assessments, which sometimes may not the most positive, sometimes it can even be negative. But this is the key to people’s trust in power and stability in society: an understanding of how it reacts to what we do.
I believe that this is how you will act and fulfil your duties, which are difficult and require maximum responsibility and dedication, conscientious work to direct all your power, knowledge, and skills to serve people and for the good of Russia.
Of course, I would like to wish you success in this – I hope and I believe – fruitful work.
Thank you for your attention and I would like to give the floor to the participants of our meeting.
Please, who would like to take the floor?
Governor of the Kirov Region Alexander Sokolov: Good afternoon, Mr President.
In pursuance of your Executive Order, we, together with military commissar’s offices, organised partial mobilisation of reservists. Everything was done right on schedule according to the orders for the required military specialties, and we corrected immediately, in manual mode, all mistakes related to changes in social status and state of health, or things like someone having become a father of many children, or someone having worked in the defence or IT industries without reporting it to the military commissar’s office.
I held meetings of the regional call-up commission on a daily basis, while the heads of municipalities followed suit with meetings of district and city commissions. Everyone used their heads, resolved issues according to law and justice, tried not to mobilise the only breadwinners who had wives on maternity leave.
I immediately invited the prosecutor's office and the Russian Popular Front to work together, and this made it possible to settle all controversial issues immediately, not following the consequences. Now we are continuing interaction, we are working together with databases, verifying and clarifying the status of all people.
Defence industry enterprises in our region switched to three-shift work. At their request, we launched night shifts of public transport and opened extended daycare groups in schools and kindergartens to prevent any concerns among workers.
This Saturday, I flew to the mobilised guys, where our regiment is stationed – the Volsk Academy of Logistics, a real military town. Many thanks to the Saratov residents: they created excellent conditions, food, accommodation, new ammunition, protection, and most importantly, real military training.
Our fund For Vyatka has raised more than 70 million rubles in a week thanks to both entrepreneurs and ordinary people. During a meeting on September 30 on the square, several million rubles were donated via online banking. We buy everything that is needed for participants in the special military operation: drones, thermal imaging cameras, welfare items. We collected personal parcels from people and brought more than 30 tonnes of cargo to the military unit. We will collect more if needed.
The guys are locked and loaded, they only worry about their families. We take care of their families. I signed an executive order: all children of the mobilised are exempt from fees for kindergartens and school meals; at the municipal level, we are currently arranging free public transport travel for them. We launched a special hotline for families. We provide social workers to everyone who needs help with issues related to medicine, schools, kindergartens, and we send volunteers to help. Hundreds of volunteers have joined the We Are Together centres to help the families of reservists.
Thank you very much for introducing a credit payment break, this really calmed the guys. They also ask that an interest payment break be considered, because debts are accumulating.
Mr President, please instruct the Russian Government to consider this issue.
As for the rest, we are dealing with all issues and continuing the course towards the region’s development. Thank you very much for supporting our infrastructure projects. Following your instruction, the Government resolved all the issues, we are being allocated funds for the next year. And people know that our cause is just and we will definitely win and continue to live for the good of the country.
Thank you very much.
Vladimir Putin: Good.
Thank you, Mr Sokolov. I would like to wish you success in your work in general.
You were right to draw attention to issues of partial mobilisation. Unfortunately, there is enough stupidity, in fact, as, unfortunately, I repeat once again, it often happens in other areas. But if we had not started dealing with it the way we are doing it now, we would never have seen the problems that have been accumulating there and, apparently, have been accumulating for quite a long time. This is a good opportunity for us to deal with all these issues.
This work is led by governors. I am asking all regional heads to analyse everything carefully, together with the corresponding departments of the Defence Ministry and military commissar’s offices, to update the database and make proposals on how this work must be organised in this country in the future. This goes for all the components of our military organisation.
Everything that is happening is a good reason to make decisions on the further development of the Armed Forces as a whole. All this, of course, will be considered in the further development of the Armed Forces, when addressing issues related to stepping up Russia’s defence capability. Everything related to mobilisation is, of course, a component of this large systemic work, which also concerns the heads of Russian regions. Therefore, I ask you to pay due attention to this in the future.
Thank you, and once again I congratulate you on your election to this high position. I am sure that you will do everything to justify the hopes of people.
Please, colleagues, who else?
Governor of the Kaliningrad Region Anton Alikhanov: Anton Alikhanov, Kaliningrad.
Mr President, I would like to thank you for supporting the Kaliningrad Region and its residents during the unfriendly actions of our neighbours, which you have already mentioned.
The transport issue is the most important aspect in the development of our region. Literally last Thursday we raised the flag on the General Chernyakhovsky ferry, which, on your instructions, was built specifically for the Kaliningrad Region. It has already become the eleventh vessel of the so-called sea bridge that connects Kaliningrad and St Petersburg, the Leningrad region. Just at the end of last week another, twelfth ship sailed. Thank you very much for your support.
Following your instructions, the Government has decided to subsidise the maritime shipping of goods that have been subject to illegal sanctions by the European Union, so as not to allow prices to rise for consumers and businesses. This was a very important issue for us, and once again, thank you very much for your support. The whole region, all the residents and the business community really appreciate this attention.
Of course, it is important for us, including for investment activity, because without maintaining a high level, it will be hard for us to move forward. And I want to say that this week we will be laying the foundation stone for a new plant that will be built by a subsidiary of the Rosatom State Corporation. This will be the largest enterprise in the region, which will produce lithium-ion batteries.
We are simply not cutting back on all development plans and the construction of new plants and companies; on the contrary, we are adding new projects. I am sure that this will continue in the future, and we will do everything to achieve this.
Once again, thank you very much for your support.
Vladimir Putin: Mr Alikhanov, we've talked a lot about all the things you've mentioned, and about a whole range of other things as well. Kaliningrad is certainly one of the most important regions of Russia, our outpost in the west, and we have to do everything we can to make sure that people's lives are stable and that any disruptions that may occur as a result of unfriendly actions of our neighbours do not have any impact on the vital functions of our economy.
Of course, such things as prices, investment appeal, are extremely important. Equally important is the stability of the entire infrastructure and its independence. This is why we will certainly intensify the steps we are taking, including, to a large extent, at your suggestion, as well as our efforts to ensure this reliability without forgetting about the economic attractiveness of the region, which is very high. I am sure it will only grow.
I wish you every success. On the whole, you are doing well and you are confidently overcoming all the difficulties the region is facing. The results are good for the previous period of your work. I wish you success.
Please, who else, colleagues? Is everything clear to everyone?
Well, once again, I wish you all the best. I wish all the plans that you have made for yourself in the run-up to the election campaign – and I know that all of you have people, a team that has worked with you on these plans – I hope that the promises you made to citizens during the campaign and the results that you will achieve will not differ from each other. On the contrary, if they do differ, then it is only to exceed the targets that you have set for yourself.
I wish you success. All the best to you.