On the flight to Egypt
According to Putin, air service to Egypt will be restored after the security of flights of Russian citizens, but so far it is not. The Egyptian authorities must find a way of screening passengers, baggage and catering that will make your stay, arrival and departure of tourists are safe, said the President. “No such algorithm is not found, although our special services and law enforcement agencies are working with the Egyptian friends on this issue”, — concluded Putin.
Russian airlines have suspended indefinitely flights to Egypt after presidential decree in November 2015. The same document Putin recommended that the agents and tour operators to temporarily refrain from sale of rounds to Egypt. The reason was the crash of 31 October in the Sinai Peninsula liner “Kogalymavia” flying from Sharm El Sheikh to Petersburg with 224 people on Board. According to the FSB, on the plane during the flight, a bomb exploded capacity up to 1 kg in a trotyl equivalent.
Vladimir Putin confirmed that the former Deputy Prime Minister Alexei Kudrin will actively work in the expert Council under the President. “And effectively working structures, can be, and the Center for strategic research, it will focus on issues associated with the development strategy for the period after 2018,” said Putin.
Earlier that Kudrin may take one of the leadership positions in CSR and is going to write a new economic program to the President, told a source close to the presidential administration, and familiar Kudrin. In the “straight line” Putin said that Kudrin for a long time refused to work in the administration, but his position has changed.
Putin reiterated that he considers the Turkish people friendly, but the Russian leadership “there is a problem with some political leaders whose behaviour we consider to be inadequate and accordingly react to it”. The President stressed that he will not allow “Russia to sit on the neck and drive”, but noted that official Moscow is ready to “lend a helping hand and friendship to any partner, if he wants to”.
Relations with Turkey deteriorated after he was shot down by Russian su-24 bomber. Putin called it a “stab in the back”, and the Turkish authorities “accomplices of terrorists”. During a press conference in December he said that Turkey wants “to lick US in one place”.
About Lyudmila Putina
“Maybe someday I will be able to satisfy your curiosity,” replied Putin to the question of the inhabitant of Gatchina, when he “will introduce the first lady.” She mentioned that, according to some media reports, the former President’s wife Lyudmila Putina married again (the edition of “Interlocutor” in January reported that she married Arthur Ocheretnaya).
The President said that his relationship with his ex-wife “almost better than before”, she’s OK, like him. Traditionally, Putin stressed that the primary interest is his work, not personal life. The couple Putins announced the divorce after nearly 30 years of marriage in June 2013. On a straight line in 2014 Putin to the question of whether Russia’s new first lady, said that at first he had “to marry Lyudmila Alexandrovna”.
About the national guard
Putin said that the goal of creating new law enforcement agencies — “to put under special control the circulation of weapons in the country.” “In this structure is now concentrated all that is associated with the weapon. And security, and the permit system, and supervision of private actors, and private armies”, — the President recalled. According to him, thanks to the creation of the national guard authorities will be able “to increase efficiency and reduce costs for maintenance services.”
As follows from the decree of the President about creation of the national guard (the new service will be called Asgardia), the Agency will maintain public order, to fight terrorism and extremism, engage in territorial defense of the country, to protect an important state-owned enterprises and special goods to help FSB at the border, as well as to monitor compliance with legislation in the sphere of trafficking in weapons and in the field of private security. Asgardia will be able to participate in peacekeeping operations abroad.
The observers in the Donbass
Putin said that he supports the proposal of the President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko to increase the number of representatives of OSCE on the contact line, including armed. According to him, now it’s up to the OSCE. Now the observers of this organization are not armed.
The President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko April 2, once again reminded that Kiev insists on placing in the Donbas police mission of the OSCE. Not only on the line of contact, but in all beyond the control of Kiev territories.According to the Ukrainian President, it should provide security, including during the local elections, which should take place in the territories that now Kiev does not control. DPR and LPR repeatedly opposed the emergence of such a mission. Russia’s representative in the trilateral contact group on settling the situation in Donbass Boris Gryzlov on April 6 had opposed the bringing of police of the OSCE mission.
Putin said: Russia proceeds from the fact that a serious military confrontation in the Donbass will be no more.
About road funds
Putin suggested not to take away from all of regions of extra money from the growth of the fuel excise tax this year, but the fact that regions will leave, exactly should go towards construction and repair of roads. According to the President, it is necessary to secure the purposes for which it is possible to spend means of regional road funds: this should only be road construction and repair of roads. Now not legally prohibited to spend this money on other purposes — as a result of “road funds spent in an inappropriate way, for other purposes,” the governors look at road funds “at the store”, explained the President.
Since April 1, the excise tax on petrol were increased by 2 rubles. per liter, now all revenues from the excise taxes go to the budgets of the regions. However, the Finance Ministry “because of the known difficulties with the budget,” said Putin, wants to collect additional revenues from increased excise taxes to the Federal budget. “I think that here it is necessary to find a compromise, and at least one ruble [income per 1 RUB. of the increase of excise duties] is still left in road funds of the Russian regions”, — Putin said, estimating the amount of funds that remain in regional road funds 40 billion rubles.
Last year the growth of prices on food ahead of General inflation: 14% in comparison to 12.9%. The contribution of food inflation in overall price increases were “significant”, said the President, but the rising price of food “to a certain extent artificial and the result,” the result of conscious choice of the government, which has imposed counter-sanctions for the development of its own production. “We deliberately took this step, having in mind that this will create conditions for the development of our agriculture, it will have a positive effect, will increase our food security, would free the market”, — explained Putin.
As a result agriculture in the past year increased by 3% against the General falling of GDP. High prices on food — “a temporary phenomenon”, said Putin, and as you saturate the market with domestic food prices will decline, “at least to stabilize”.
About the economy
In December 2015, Putin said that “the peak of the crisis is behind us”, but in the April Teleorman citizens wouldn’t approve. To evaluate the “bottom” in the difficult economy, said the President and the government for this year still predicts a slight decline. “But still the trend is positive,” — said Putin. Now the economy is “grey stripe”, the President said: there are downsides (for example, real disposable incomes fell last year by 4%), but there are advantages (housing construction “peaked”, unemployment is low).
This week the Minister of economic development Alexei Ulyukayev said that in 2017 the growth will be about 1.5% in 2018-2019 years — no more than 2.5%.
About the reserves
The volume of international reserves of the Central Bank returned to the level of the beginning of 2014 and now stands at $387 billion, and the government’s reserve funds although decreased, but “very insignificant,” said Putin. The government reserves now amount to 10.5% of GDP — “this means that if you spend them in the mode in which we spent their last year”, the reserve funds will last for another 4 years — even if the “do not recharge and do nothing”. But the government predicts that next year will be economic growth, so much to spend from reserve funds no longer needed, said the President.
Last month Bloomberg wrote that Putin is part of gold reserves tenderly, regarding them as a guarantee financial independence of Russia. Senior sources on condition of anonymity, told Bloomberg that the President regularly cope with their assistants about the status of the reserves and is willing to sacrifice the ruble for the sake of stability reserves of gold and hard currency.
About party system
Putin called United Russia “a stabilizing element of our political system” and rated chetyrehstennoy system (in the state Duma have the representation of four parties) as adequate, saying that “unnecessary mess”. “The revolutionary events of the 90s brought to the surface very bright people. They were able to lead, and they have a position,” he said. The ideology of the party in power he was praised as a “conservative centrist” conducting “our ship between Scylla and Charybdis”.
The President noted that win in regional elections the representatives of the other parties: he cited the example of the Petrozavodsk (the mayor from “the Apple” Galina Shirshina won the election, but was removed by the legislature), Yekaterinburg (the mayor Yevgeny Roizman, from the “Civic platform”), Irkutsk region (the Governor-Communist Sergey Levchenko).
The order has changed a number of parties made before the elections, Putin said. Now, according to the CEC, the right to participate in elections without collection of signatures have 14 parties. Registered, according to the justice Ministry, 77 political parties