25 february 2010

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin meets with Viktor Zimin, Prime Minister of Republic of Khakassia

At the meeting the two leaders discussed the socio-economic situation in the Republic of Khakassia. In addition, Mr Zimin thanked Mr Putin for supporting the restoration of the Sayano-Shushenskaya hydro-electric power plant.

Transcript of the beginning of the meeting:

Vladimir Putin: Mr Zimin, I know that things are pretty good in your republic. But as is the custom, we should talk about what has been left undone, what problems you face in the republic, and what additional help and support you need from the government.

Viktor Zimin: Mr Putin I was utterly sincere at the conference when I thanked you for the decision allowing us to have 640 megawatts. For us - such is our daily life in the republic - this is not just 640 megawatts. It spells revival and not just the revival of the plant. It is the economic focal point of the republic. The decision, made during the peak of the crisis, left us doubting if it was feasible, but today we thank you for it. We will not be asking any made-up questions today. The federal services and ministries worked with us during that period. I can confirm that.

Matters relating to the road (Sayanogorsk-Mainskaya HEPP-Cheremushki) are still under consideration, but these are technical issues. The year ended very evenly for us. I'll tell you more - supported by the government, we prepaid wages for January in December. That is to say, we compensated people for what happened at the power plant. And, of course, we are looking forward to the complete restoration of the plant.

Some people - perhaps those who are the opponents of our hydro-electric power industry - say there are problems. I can say firmly and confidently that we had no problems either with the plant, or its recovery. There is one question, but it concerns the future and the economy - we need an outlet to the west, to Kemerovo Region. If you permit me, I will submit a separate proposal to you. The other issues, Mr Putin, are being resolved.

Vladimir Putin: Good.