19 march 2011

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin meets with Sakhalin Region Governor Anatoly Khoroshavin

The meeting’s agenda was focused on social programmes, particularly housing construction. Mr. Khoroshavin said this sector has been growing continuously, even during the crisis, with particular emphasis on social housing for state employees and young professionals.

Transcript of the beginning of the meeting:

Vladimir Putin: There have been many absolutely positive developments in Sakhalin, especially in recent years. This includes the economy and the public sector. What do you think are the best indicators? And where are there still problems?

Anatoly Khoroshavin: Mr Putin, thank you, firstly, for the kind words that you said. Indeed, recent economic indicators are fairly good – GDP is growing, and industrial output is increasing this year. Not as much as before, but nevertheless, we have grown. In general, almost all our economic indicators are in the black. The economy does not exist in a vacuum, after all – the economy is for the people. And here, perhaps, the main thing is that it is has been made more for the people. First and foremost, we have increased the amount of housing construction – the momentum here is pretty good.

Vladimir Putin: There's construction every year, yes?

Anatoly Khoroshavin: Yes, since 2006 – 65,000 square meters in 2006, – thousand, 104,000 in 2007, approximately 140,000 in 2008 and over 160,000 in 2009. And in 2010, there is already 202,000 thousand square meters.

Vladimir Putin: In other words, there was no recession in the construction industry even during the crisis?

Anatoly Khoroshavin: No, only growth. And I would also like to point out that among these 200,000, say, for last year, we have approximately 350 public housing apartments. We are building social housing in order to secure state employees and to attract young professionals. This, in my view, is an important endeavour.

We passed a law on benefits for young professionals – a so-called "leg-up."

You probably remember how it was in Soviet times? Now we make a one-time payment of 200,000 roubles to young men and women who graduate from university. If he or she settles in a rural area, the payment is 250,000 thousand roubles. If this it's a secondary school, it is 150,000 thousand roubles, or slightly more. If he or she graduates from a vocational education institution, the payment is 150,000 roubles or slightly more.

Vladimir Putin: Young women as well as young men?

Anatoly Khoroshavin: Young women... We have a number of other social programmes. Just recently we passed a law on regional maternity capital – it is modelled on the federal programme, and already pays an extra 150,000 roubles for a second child.

Vladimir Putin: What kind of a programme do you have for young families?

Anatoly Khoroshavin: There is a programme for young families, and it's been in place for more than one a year. It's like two programmes – for young families and for young scientists. We want to attract highly-qualified staff here.

Vladimir Putin: You're subsidising interest rates?

Anatoly Khoroshavin: We are.

Vladimir Putin: How much?

Anatoly Khoroshavin: Up to 30%.

Vladimir Putin: Do young families receive any kind of benefit for the birth of a child?

Anatoly Khoroshavin: We have no benefits here, but we passed a law for large families. We will pay a housing subsidy with the birth of her a third child – also a one-time payment of about two million roubles to purchase housing – legislators are working on it.

Vladimir Putin: Good.