By Putin Vladimir
As always at the end of the year we are holding a meeting of the Council for Strategic Development and National Projects to see what has been done to reach our national goals that are, I must emphasise, the basic, integral guidelines for national development until 2030.
As a key item of our practical agenda, we will discuss today systemic mechanisms for supporting investment in technological projects that ensure Russia’s technological sovereignty, including industrial clusters that I talked about at the St Petersburg Economic Forum, as you will remember. Deputy Prime Minister – Minister of Industry Denis Manturov and Head of the State Council Commission on Industry Alexei Dyumin will make reports on this issue.
But before that, I think it is necessary to outline a number of priority tasks of our national policy for 2023 and to suggest new solutions that will allow us to develop more confidently. In part, they will help us counter the challenges that our economy and our citizens are facing today in the context of the serious, tangible and even tectonic changes that are affecting the entire world.
As you know, an unprecedented sanctions aggression has been launched against Russia. It was aimed at crushing our economy, wrecking our national currency – the ruble – by stealing our currency reserves, and provoking a devastating inflation in a short span of time.
As we can see – in fact, this is common knowledge – this plan has fallen through. The Russian business community and government bodies worked in a well-coordinated and professional manner and our citizens displayed unity and responsibility. The Government, the Bank of Russia and the Russian regions stabilised the situation by pooling their efforts.
The GDP for this year is predicted to fall about 2.5 percent. So there will be a decline, as I already mentioned in public. True, recently I spoke about 2.9 percent, but the latest forecasts put it at a bit less – 2.5 percent. Of course, this is also a decline, but not the crushing 20 percent that many Western, and frankly, our experts forecasted at the time when the collective West hit us with the economic war. Moreover, in the third quarter, the economic dynamics already showed slight growth after the minimal figures of the second quarter.
After a serious surge in March-April, the level of prices has actually remained the same since May, while the Russian ruble has become one of the world’s strongest currencies since the start of the year.
We achieved this result by making decisions to regulate the capital drain, convert payments for gas into rubles, actively use national currencies in trade with our partners, but primarily, of course, by pursuing a responsible fiscal policy.
Russia’s public finances remain stable. In January-November of this year, the federal budget was executed with a surplus of 560 billion rubles, and the consolidated budget with a surplus of 1.451 trillion rubles.
At the same time, in the current and next year, we expect a federal budget deficit of about 2 percent of the GDP, and this will be the best result among the G20 countries. I won’t cite examples at this point. Experts are well aware of the figures on other G20 countries. Moreover, the budget for the next three years provides for a gradual reduction of the deficit to less than one percent of the GDP in 2025.
We will retain our responsible fiscal and macro-economic policy, which will guarantee not only the full funding of social commitments but also the resolution of new tasks facing the country in the next three years.
I would like to emphasise that this policy is important not only for countering current challenges but also in the long-term perspective. We will adhere to this policy, focusing our attention on turning it primarily into a firm foundation of economic growth for years ahead.
@views exclusive rights: Putin Vladimir, President of Russia at a Meeting of Council for Strategic Development and National Projects, held via videoconference on December 15, 2022 17:20 in Novo-Ogaryovo, Moscow Region, Russia as transcribed and made available by Friends of Vladimir Putin and Russia in Lebanon.