The President said in his opening remarks that he was beginning a series of meetings with the public on the implementation of national projects. The meeting in Kazan focused on the Housing and Urban Environment national project.
Before the meeting, Vladimir Putin visited the renovated Moskovsky Centre of Culture and Sports. The centre was the city’s pilot project under which old houses of culture are turned into modern multirole cultural centres offering youth and adults opportunities for creative, intellectual and physical development. The Moskovsky renovation project was launched in 2017 and completed in April 2018. The centre has a modern concert and sports halls, dancing, singing and art rooms, as well as a conference and co-working rooms.
The President was accompanied on his visit to the centre by Presidential Plenipotentiary Envoy to the Volga Federal District Igor Komarov and Head of the Republic of Tatarstan Rustam Minnikhanov. The tour was guided by aide to the Head of the Republic of Tatarstan Natalia Fishman.
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Opening remarks at a meeting with the public
President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon, friends and colleagues.
Today’s events in Kazan will be the start of a series of meetings, conferences and discussions like this. The subject of these events will be the national projects, which we are launching to ensure forward progress in Russia in key development areas.
As you know, we have allocated a great deal of funding for this and have adopted decisions on funding sources and priority areas for development. Now we must make all this run as smoothly as a Swiss watch and create the mechanisms and instruments necessary for attaining our goals.
As I mentioned earlier, significant funding is being provided by the Federation, but the bulk of the work must be done by the regions. So, it is critical to foster collaboration between the federal centre and the regional and municipal authorities and, of course, the entities that are directly involved in implementing these projects, such as public organisations, primarily, businesses and the professional environment, the professional community. We need to join our forces.
The Housing project is an extremely important one. It is fundamental to developing the country, society and state, because the quality of habitation and the resolution of housing issues determine not only the mood in society, which is important, but also critical sectors of our economy, which affect other areas as well.
There are many issues that need our attention, and many complex challenges, too. At this stage, they are even coming into conflict with each other. Why? Because we need to resolve the core issues related to the so-called defrauded co-investors. This problem did not arise of its own or because there are many crooks, but among other things because the state has so far failed to regulate this sphere in a civilised manner.
In order to have it properly regulated, we must adopt decisions that formally limit operations in this sector of economy and create certain challenges for switching to bank support and bank financing in order to stop the practice of raising money from people and avoid situations where people can lose their money.
This comes with certain difficulties, including financial burdens. On the one hand, we need to bring housing construction up to 120 million square metres, but, on the other hand, the constraints associated with switching to another financing system may lead to a market contraction. Here, we need to resolve a dual problem. We need to stimulate development and construction while at the same time switching to modern and civilised approaches to organising the work.
So, I wanted to first sit down with you and then discuss his subject with public organisations and businesses which have been working in this sphere for many years, to hear you out and to find out what concerns you. After that, we will meet with our colleagues from the State Council Presidium and adopt corresponding decisions which will be made known to our entire country.
To reiterate, this is the first time we are doing this type of work, but I will continue to do this work in other regions and for other national projects. So, let us begin this exchange of information. First of all, I would like, of course, to listen to what you have to say, your thoughts and concerns, so that the governors can take them into account when preparing decisions that will be implemented in order to solve problems and achieve our goals in this sphere.
Let us get to work.