President Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon, dear friends,
We are here today in Krasnoyarsk to discuss the projects that establish two federal universities – the Siberian and Southern Federal Universities.
I would like to hear from the heads of the federal agencies, the heads of the universities, the governors, and the students, about how you think the project’s implementation is going. I think this project is important not just because it is seeing the emergence of two major federal education institutions, but more significantly because these two universities are to become the prototypes for developing a new education system in our country, a system that meets the demands of today’s and tomorrow’s life, of today’s and tomorrow’s economy. Both here and in Rostov, several educational establishments have been reorganised to form these two new universities. Four educational establishments have served as the base for forming the new university here in Krasnoyarsk.
But I want to emphasise that our aim in establishing these new universities is not simple consolidation. Our aim is to raise the quality of education services, raise the quality of education and create a new and innovative environment. Our aim is to put in place the required conditions for integrating science, education and the economy in order to create synergy out of these different areas of activity. Our aim is to produce a quality education product that will help us to tackle our main development objective, that of giving our economy an innovative character, and, of course, we also seek to bring major educational centres closer to the parts of the country that have such great potential and importance for our nation’s future. Our goal is to ensure that the specialists trained within the walls of these new universities will meet the demands of the regional and national economy and make sure that these universities will be able to respond flexibly to changes on the labour market and supply needed specialists at the right moment.
Looking at the region we are in today, the Siberian region, Krasnoyarsk, we see that there are very large and ambitious projects underway, projects in the mining and minerals industry and in high technology. These ambitious projects cannot be properly implemented without people who take the right decisions to reach the set objectives. This is our main goal. We need to ensure that our economy has a supply of qualified local professionals. This is a goal that we can achieve and I have no doubt that not only will these universities become leading centres of learning in the Russian Federation but will also take a worthy place in the international education system.
Here in Siberia at least five vectors for cooperation with foreign partners are planned, and in Rostov the number of foreign partners is even greater. This is also important because education and science today cannot be confined within national borders. In the context of globalisation these goals can be reached effectively only through combining our possibilities with those of other leading education and science centres around the world and exchanging personnel and information with them. I hope very much that not only will specialists who in their time left the Soviet Union or the Russian Federation return, but that we will also attract leading foreign specialists and offer them all the conditions necessary for their work.
But before we ensure the necessary conditions for foreign specialists, including for teachers from abroad, we need first to concentrate on putting in place the best conditions for our own students and our own teaching and research staff. This is also one of our goals in setting up these universities in Siberia and southern Russia, because only by optimising expenditure can we achieve effective investment in their development.
I remind you that almost 5.5 billion roubles are being allocated this year for the two universities, and 4.7 billion roubles will be allocated next year. Today, and after the formation of the new parliament following the election on December 2, we also need to look at how to organise financing in the future, because not only the business community (which, as you know, is also involved in the work on developing these universities), but above all the federal and regional budgets must provide a clear blueprint for how these universities will be financed in the future.
Thank you for your attention.