30 august 2012

Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev chairs a Government meeting

Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said at the meeting that this year the regions will receive 263 million roubles for programmes to socialise orphans and children with disabilities.  

“The government should take special care of children with special needs and orphans. All of us understand how important it is for them to have an opportunity to integrate into society. The best practices and socialisation models should be adopted across the country. This year, 263 million roubles will be allocated to the regions for this purpose. We will discuss the distribution of these funds at today’s meeting,” he said.

Mr Medvedev said that participants in the meeting would also review a draft government resolution on establishing a national coordinating council to support young talents.

At the meeting, Mr Medvedev instructed the relevant agencies to finalise in two weeks the plan of priority measures up to 2014 to implement the most important provisions of the National Children’s Strategy for 2012-2017. Minister of Education and Science Dmitry Livanov presented a draft plan of action.

“Well, I think this issue has been analysed but, as they say, the sky’s the limit, and probably there are subjects that could be made part of the plan… Let’s agree to allow two weeks for improving the plan and then we’ll discuss it, maybe also in the Open Government. I think this is the right thing to do, and then we’ll consider its adoption,” Mr Medvedev said.

Participants in the meeting also reviewed social consumption norms for utility services, which would be gradually introduced in Russia over the next few years. Mr Medvedev believes these consumption norms should take into account the climate characteristics of the regions and vary in urban and rural areas.

“It is very important for the new system to consider the interests of consumers and the climate features of different regions. The consumption norms for electricity in southern Russia must differ from those of the regions beyond the Arctic Circle. Besides the geographical conditions, the rates will vary according to the type of the settlement (village or city) and the number of residents in a building,” Mr Medvedev said.

The prime minister said that an experiment to introduce social electricity consumption norms will be launched in several pilot regions in 2013. “In 2014 dual tariffs – social and above-norm – will be used throughout the country. Let me repeat that this primarily applies to the cost of electricity and will extend to water supply starting in 2015,” Mr Medvedev explained.

He said that social consumption norms for heating and gas will be the last to be introduced and only if the experience with other utilities proves successful.

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