Prime Minister Vladimir Putin chairs a meeting of the Russian government


“The government’s recent initiatives, which have resulted in amendments to legislation, clearly establish the duty of specialists in the power industry to form seasonal fuel reserves and perform scheduled maintenance on equipment. A special law, On Heat Supply, has been adopted. According to reports, preparations are going according to schedule this year.”

Transcript of the beginning of the meeting:

Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen.

I'd like to start today's meeting on an untraditional note. Today, as you know, the Moscow City Duma confirmed our colleague Sergei Sobyanin as Moscow's new mayor. Congratulations, Mr Sobyanin!

Sergei Sobyanin: Thank you!

Vladimir Putin: For two and a half years, Mr Sobyanin, who was head of the presidential administration from 2005 to May 2008 before joining the government, has ensured the smooth operation of the government and its staff. He was the brains behind a number of modernisation projects and played a role in implementing them, for example, lifting administrative barriers for business, Electronic Government, and many others.

I have no doubt that Mr Sobyanin will be equally energetic and effective in his new, very important position as Moscow mayor, and that Muscovites will not regret their choice. I would also like to thank the deputies of United Russia in the Moscow legislature for their decision. I have signed the necessary documents to present Sergei Sobyanin with a government award: the Stolypin Medal, First Class. Thank you, Mr Sobyanin, for all your hard work.

Sergei Sobyanin: Mr Putin, may I say a few words?

Vladimir Putin: Yes, please.

Sergei Sobyanin: Mr Putin, colleagues. I would like to express my sincere appreciation for the experience that I have gained in the government and for your cooperation during all these years. I would like to express special thanks to Prime Minister Putin. My time in the government has been invaluable training. I hope that, even though I will no longer be a member of the government, I will still remain a member of your large team. Not a single major project in Moscow can be implemented without the involvement of the government and the relevant ministries and agencies. I hope I will remain in close cooperation and work extensively and productively with each of you. I am counting on your help and support. Thank you very much, colleagues.

Vladimir Putin: Thank you.

Let's turn now to today's agenda. Today we will consider several important issues. One of them is Russia's development strategy in the Antarctic. Our country strictly adheres to the Antarctic Treaty, which the Soviet Union signed way back in 1960. Our intention is to gradually expand the presence of Russian research expeditions on the continent, upgrade our polar stations and research fleet, and play an active role in international polar projects.

Russia currently has five year-round polar stations in the Antarctic: Mirny, Vostok, Progress, Novolazarevskaya and Bellingshausen.

And, without question, the Atlantic Ocean should remain the most important resource base for our fishing fleet: we have the necessary capabilities for this.

Moving on to the second, but no less important issue: we will hear reports on the readiness of the power industry as well as housing and utility facilities for the autumn and winter period of peak activity. I just saw colleagues on conference calls discussing this matter. This issue is under control, but please keep it in your sights. I would like to remind you that the government's recent initiatives, which have resulted in amendments to legislation, clearly establish the duty of specialists in the power industry to form seasonal fuel reserves and perform scheduled maintenance on equipment. A special law, On Heat Supply, has been adopted.

According to reports, preparations are going according to schedule this year. By the middle of October, 99% of boiler houses and heat-supply systems were prepared for the heating season and necessary repairs were completed at residential buildings. Nevertheless, I ask the Ministry of Energy and the Ministry of Regional Development to keep this issue under your constant supervision, so that everything goes smoothly in practice, not just on paper.

Another item on our agenda is the draft state programme on energy conservation. We have budgeted 7 billion roubles for its implementation next year. These funds are primarily intended for the constituent entities of the Russian Federation to prepare high-quality energy conservation projects at state-run institutions, housing and utility facilities, as well as on other regional and municipal facilities.

In addition to direct financing, the programme involves the use of non-budget sources for the transition to modern, energy-efficient equipment. As a result, we will be able to considerably accelerate the application of up-to-date and energy-efficient technology in schools, hospitals and other municipal institutions, and state-financed organisations will be able to use the money they save to improve their operations and raise salaries, which is extremely important. The law, On Energy Conservation, establishes a mechanism for doing just this.

One more thing: we have always strongly supported plans to hold major international forums and competitions in Russia. Our Hockey Federation has put forward some interesting ideas and initiatives. I recently discussed them with Vladislav Tretyak.

The Russian Hockey Federation proposes organising a new hockey series between Russia and Canada to mark the anniversary of the 1972 Summits Series between the teams. We have discussed this issue with the Canadian sports ministry and the NHL. The initial response has been favourable.

And there is another initiative, too. We have essentially applied to host the Ice Hockey World Championship in 2016. We are planning to hold the games in Moscow and St Petersburg. And we wouldn't have to build anything new for this. All the facilities for hockey matches are in place, and we can host the world championship at the highest level, including by providing all the necessary government guarantees.

We have notified the International Ice Hockey Federation. In general, the response has been positive here, too. The governor of St Petersburg has been informed. Ms Matvienko is prepared to lend her support. She will have to allocate a modest sum from the city budget. I hope that the new leadership in Moscow will show the same support for this initiative.

The application must be prepared before next May, 2011. We have already forwarded all the necessary preliminary documents. We have excellent chances. Then we will host Student Games in Kazan in 2013, the Sochi Olympics in 2014, maybe the Student Games in 2017, and in 2016 we could host the world hockey championship. So each year - 2012, 2013, 2014... If we manage to do everything necessary for Formula One, we will start hosting races at the end of 2014 or in 2015. We'll see.

Since Mr Tretyak is here, it would only be right to spare him all the agenda items and give him the floor now, so he can leave after his report. Mr Tretyak, please.

Vladislav Tretyak: Mr Putin, members of the government, I would like to thank you on behalf of the Hockey Federation. Ice hockey is our national product. Thank you for your support. Our hockey players have given us a lot to cheer about in the past five years: they won two gold medals, a silver and a bronze. And, of course, we want to continue to advance our sport.

We certainly want to play against Canada in 2012. You know that the 1972 series caused quite a stir around the world. It is remembered to this day because it was the first time our guys played against Canadian professionals.

The International Ice Hockey Federation has given us the go-ahead. In two weeks, I will fly to Canada to meet with the NHL and its unions to discuss this matter again.

This is very important, so our Foreign Ministry should cooperate with the Canadian side on this. Mr Mutko (Minister of Sports, Tourism and Youth Policy) has given his consent, and we are now working together. We should all work together to make this a real celebration.

The most important thing is for us to honour the veterans of 1972; they are almost 70 now. So in 2012, we would like to invite the Canadian players, who made their country famous, and our players too, and have a ceremony in their honour. It would help popularise hockey.

And the second issue: we are, of course, a hockey country, and so we must participate in high-level competitions. For this reason, at a congress in May 2016 we will fight for the right to host the championship. And the government's support is critical for us to get these competitions. You said an agreement has been made with Moscow. I have talked with St Petersburg and Ms Matvienko: she is also with us. Thank you very much once again for the support.

Vladimir Putin: The decision will be taken next May, and the championship will be held in 2016. How do you see our chances of being awarded the right to host the world championship?

Vladislav Tretyak: Our chances are very good. The competition is Denmark. I am going to meet them on November 13: we will give them 2017 in exchange for 2016. So far we have agreed to work toward this end. I think our chances are good.

Vladimir Putin: Our traditional friends and competitors are the Czechs. Are they going to submit an application?

Vladislav Tretyak: They will host it before us. The Finns, Swedes and Czechs will. They all will host the championship prior to 2016, so they are not our competition. The candidates are Ukraine, Denmark and us. Latvia also wanted to, but it dropped its bid at the last minute.

Vladimir Putin: And when can we host the series, in which months?

Vladislav Tretyak: In August, in the end of August, as it was 40 years ago: four games in Canada and four games in our country. We want to play in Moscow, St Petersburg, Kazan and Sochi. We want to have at least one game here in Sochi if the stadium is ready by then, because some owners of pro hockey teams don't want to send their players to us. There is a huge effort to draw attention to Sochi, and these games would help do that. If we host the series, the players will become interested, and they'll see the level at which we host competitions.

Vladimir Putin: Any questions for Mr Tretyak? Thank you very much.

Vladislav Tretyak: Thank you.

Vladimir Putin: Let's get down to work.

Адрес страницы в сети интернет: