President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon, colleagues,
Yesterday, in accordance with the Constitution, I introduced the candidacy of Dmitry Medvedev for your consideration to be approved for the post of Prime Minister.
Mr Medvedev certainly needs no special introduction. For the past six years, he has led the country’s Government. You are well aware of how difficult these years have been. Russia and the whole world have faced new challenges and the situation has been changing dynamically. For our country it was particularly acute, and often seemed dramatic.
Despite all these difficulties, the Government has managed to solve not only extraordinary and urgent tasks, but also to identify and preserve the prospects for development and to constantly boost these opportunities aimed at mid- and long-term periods. In my opinion, this is extremely important.
These extensive and comprehensive efforts were built on a solid, professional and fair foundation, without pursuing short-term political outcomes, in a responsible way and, as I said, aiming at the long-term perspective.
The Prime Minister made a detailed report on the Government’s work in the State Duma just recently – in April. I think the main point is that all the achievements of the previous years are creating a solid foundation for moving forward and resolving the historical tasks I spoke about in the Address to the Federal Assembly and at the presidential inauguration ceremony.
As you know, yesterday I signed Executive Order On the National Goals and Strategic Objectives of the Russian Federation through to 2024. This document talks about an active demographic policy and a steady growth of the population, a breakthrough in technology and science, high economic growth rates, new living standards for our citizens, an increase in their real incomes, and a drastic reduction of poverty.
It is necessary to build an effective social support system, continue reforms in education and healthcare, resolve the housing and environmental problems and support culture. Finally, it is essential to launch major infrastructure, transport and energy projects, develop the Russian Far East, the Arctic and all of our regions, and upgrade cities and rural communities.
The implementation of national projects and programmes will require joint, well-orchestrated efforts at all levels and branches of government – both legislative and executive, and all regions. I am also hoping for active participation of public and professional associations and the Russian business community.
Let me repeat that these goals are very broad and ambitious and to reach them the consolidation of the entire society is required and everyone’s contribution is important. You represent different parliamentary parties and different political forces but above all you represent our citizens, your voters. I am sure that their interests, needs, and aspirations and, hence, Russia’s interests and wellbeing are playing the most important role for you and for all of us. I count on your readiness to take part in our team creative endeavour. All constructive ideas and proposals will be taken into account in the interests of our common cause.
The previous Government was distinguished by its democratic nature, openness for dialogue and discussion, readiness to review constructive proposals and accept justified criticism. These qualities became its brand name, its professional style. Much credit for the establishment of this modern managerial environment certainly goes to Mr Medvedev.
I know that he held consultations with all the parliamentary parties yesterday and today, and I am sure he will continue to closely cooperate with the parliament in the future. I believe it is very important to provide continuity and new trajectory to the Government’s work. Today all of this is essential.
I will repeat what I said yesterday: we have no time to lose; we must act. In this sense, I believe it is of utmost importance to note that over the past year, or maybe a year and a half, Dmitry Medvedev and several members of the Executive Office and the Government have been working on the programme I set out in the Executive Order signed yesterday.
This is the programme we will have to implement together. Dmitry Medvedev with his staff and the Executive Office took part in developing this programme. I think it is logical for the same team to implement these plans.
Let me repeat, the Government will have the key and core role here. It must be strong, responsible and ready to make progressive and decisive steps. It must be formed as fast as possible and must include a professional core that can join the work started earlier effectively and proactively.
But first of all, we must approve the Prime Minister. I address all of you, all the deputies and representatives of all parliamentary parties; although Dmitry Medvedev represents the leading fraction in parliament, I address all the parliamentary parties. I ask you to support my proposal to appoint Dmitry Medvedev the Prime Minister of the Russian Federation.
Thank you for your attention.