Dear citizens of Russia,
In a few minutes, the Kremlin chimes will herald the beginning of the New Year, 2005. And the outgoing year will become part of Russian history. No doubt, the life and deeds of every one of us were reflected in it, as were the achievements of the entire Russian nation. New projects and approaches to solving pressing tasks of the state emerged.
We took serious steps to make the authorities more effective, more open to society and more accountable to it. The economic and defence potential was strengthened, and the country’s capabilities increased. We are now investing more in education and science. Programmes have been drawn up to construct affordable housing, and improve the quality of health care. All our priorities are focused on people’s intellectual and spiritual development. The main task, the principal internal force of Russia's development is to realise each person’s capabilities and improve the life of the nation.
I have to say that the outgoing year also witnessed dramatic events in the life of our nation. Even today, on New Year’s night, we must remember this.
The coming year 2005 is a special one for us – it is the year of the 60th anniversary of victory in the Great Patriotic War, World War II. It is a great holiday for us. For all peoples with whom we are linked by a common fate, I would say, by historical kinship.
Starting in the New Year, 2005, we revert to an old Russian tradition – a tradition of long New Year’s holidays. Let them be radiant and memorable. Let them be filled with heartfelt warmth and cordiality.
On New Year’s night we always try to be with our near and dear ones. We are particularly attentive to our parents, readily share our joy with friends and wish happiness to our children. And, of course, we think about the future.
And whatever personal plans we may conceive, each of us knows that they are directly connected with the welfare and successes of our Russia.
May your homes be filled with the festive spirit!
I wish you happiness, peace, kindness and love!
Happy New Year, dear friends!