Opening remarks by Mikhail Mishustin:
Good afternoon, colleagues,
The Great Patriotic War began 81 years ago today. Today is the Day of Remembrance and Sorrow.
The war claimed tens of millions of lives. The people fought to defend our country’s independence on the home front and on the frontline.
We owe a debt of gratitude to the generation that defeated fascism and secured our future. It is important that every Russian family continues to commemorate and honour those heroes.
I propose honouring the memory of the participants of the events of those years, their fortitude and courage. I declare a moment of silence.
Colleagues, my working trip to Minsk ended yesterday. The prime ministers of Belarus and Uzbekistan and I toured a holding company for the production of equipment, including construction and municipal equipment. We will do whatever is necessary to reinvigorate industrial cooperation between our countries’ companies, which is particularly important amid the economic sanctions imposed on us by unfriendly states.
We also visited the Minsk branch of Plekhanov University. In an effort to build integration within the Union State, we continue to promote a single education, scientific and technological space, and this university is a good example of this effort.
We used a meeting of the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council to compare our approaches to improving integration cooperation which is strong despite the challenging international situation, a fact confirmed by the positive dynamics of the key performance indicators as of the end of last year. Trade in the EAEU has exceeded $70 billion and continues to grow.
We resolved to continue seeking cooperation to expand the transport infrastructure in the context of import substitution, which is important, and focused on creating a competitive environment in the markets, and identifying and suppressing violations of the generally accepted rules.
Our union is operating in new geopolitical circumstances marred by pressure from unfriendly countries and unstable international trade system. In an effort to protect our markets, we are jointly advancing a range of measures to improve the stability of our economies and adopting decisions to ensure the free movement of goods, services, capital and labour within the EAEU.
The St Petersburg International Economic Forum took place last week. At the plenary session, the President laid out a number of key principles underlying the socioeconomic sphere, such as continuing support for individuals and businesses, improving urban and rural areas, upgrading housing and utility services and promoting domestic tourism, as well as a range of measures to develop critical end-to-end technologies.
A Government resolution was signed as a follow-up to yet another presidential directive to further reduce the low-cost mortgage rate from 9 percent to 7 percent.
The subsidised loan amount will remain unchanged at 12 million roubles in Moscow and St Petersburg and the Moscow and Leningrad regions, and 6 million roubles in other Russian regions. The state will cover the difference between the low-cost rate and the market rate for the banks.
Those willing to improve their housing conditions can apply for the loan before the end of the year.
This step will not only help a greater number of people buy housing on favourable terms, but it will also provide significant support to the construction sector and keep related industries busy as well.
The Government also approved a five-year road construction plan. Recently, specific actions and steps to strengthen the road network and to increase the length and quality of motorways were discussed in depth at a meeting convened by the President and approved by him.
These activities were made part of the plan. Thus, the work will be funded through 2027.
We will allocate over 5 trillion roubles from the federal budget to upgrade, expand and build from scratch over 4,000 km of modern motorways. Including the investment from regional budgets and the National Wealth Fund, this amount will exceed 13 trillion roubles over five years, which in general will make it possible to renovate over 100,000 km of roads nationwide.
Due to the multiplier effect, this all-inclusive programme will help our economy better adapt to external sanctions pressures and give businesses an opportunity to rebuild supply chains and deliver goods faster and cheaper, including goods for retail and components to automobile plants, and create new jobs in the regions.
We look forward to renovated roads improving the quality of life for millions of people who will be able to enjoy comfortable travel around Russia.
(Addressing to Marat Khusnullin): Mr Khusnullin, move quickly to start implementing the plan.
The execution of the federal budget for the first quarter is on the Government meeting agenda today. In February, our country faced unprecedented external sanctions and it was critically important to maintain financial and price stability.
On behalf of the President and in conjunction with the Federal Assembly, the expert and business communities and regional authorities, we adopted system-wide decisions in order to help the economy adapt to the new circumstances and challenges building on the experience we gained during the pandemic.
We started out by saving jobs and individual income. We adopted a package of measures to provide additional support to various industries and the regions, as well as to the most vulnerable groups of people, such as pensioners and families with children.
The outcome of the first three months shows that revenue totalled over 7 trillion roubles thus exceeding the projected figures by almost a quarter and exceeding the figures for the same period last year by more than a third.
The end of the first quarter was marked by a budget surplus. Public debt remained at a comfortable level. The Government will continue to fulfil the social obligations of the state, to pursue a balanced budget policy and to form a financial basis with an eye towards resuming the sustainable growth of our economy following the completion of the adaptation period.