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Putin’s Presidential Inauguration Speech: National Development Plans & Russia To Become World’s Fourth Largest Economy By 2030

The Russian President Vladimir Putin made a comprehensive speech during his inauguration ceremony in the Kremlin, focusing on Russia’s future and its national strategic development plans. We summarise these and provide a link to the complete text below.

Russian Priorities

Amid the rapid changes in the world, Russia “must be self-sufficient and competitive,” open new horizons “as it has already happened many times in our history.” The basis of Russia’s statehood is “inter-ethnic harmony, preservation of traditions of all peoples living in Russia – a country-civilization united by the Russian language.”

Russia’s top priorities will be to have a thriving population and preserve its centuries-old values and traditions, support for this course “will continue to unite public and religious associations, political parties at all levels of the government. The consolidated will of millions of people is a powerful force and evidence of our commonly held firm belief that we alone will determine Russia’s future for the sake of present and future generations.”

New Projects

Russia is confidently looking forward and is “already implementing new projects and programs that are designed to make our development even more dynamic and even more powerful.” With all its stability the Russian state system must create conditions for renewal and development: “Stability does not mean inertia.”

The atmosphere in society has changed, now “reliability, mutual responsibility, sincerity, decency, nobility and courage” are highly valued.

“I will do everything so that people who have shown their best human and professional qualities prove their loyalty to the Fatherland by deeds and take leading positions in public administration, the economy, and in all spheres.”

Continuity

Modern Russians bear responsibility before “our thousand-year-long history and our ancestors.” Previous generations of Russians stormed seemingly inaccessible heights, because they always placed their Motherland first: “They built a world power and achieved triumphs that inspire us today.” Russia’s leadership should ensure the continuity of the country’s development as a civilization for decades to come by bringing up the younger generation “who will strengthen Russia’s might, and develop our statehood.”

“We must remember the price of internal turmoils and shocks, therefore Russia’s political system must be sustainable and “and absolutely resilient to any threats and challenges, it must ensure gradual and stable development, unity and independence of the country.”

Foreign Policy

Russia is ready to strengthen good relations with “all countries that see Russia as a reliable and honest partner:” “And this is truly the world majority.”

Moscow is ready to engage in a fair dialogue on security and strategic stability, but “it should not be held from a position of strength but should be free of arrogance, conceit and a sense of exceptionalism,” “the parties to the dialogue should be equal and have respect for each other’s interests.”

Russia does not renounce dialogue with the West: “The choice is theirs: do they intend to continue trying to restrain the development of Russia, continue the policy of aggression, pressure on our country that has not stopped for years, or look for a path to cooperation and peace.”

Together with its partners in the Eurasian integration process and other sovereign centers of development, Russia would continue working to establish a multipolar world order and a system of equal and indivisible security.

Presidential Decree: National Development Goals

Russian President Vladimir Putin also signed a decree that sets national development goals for 2030. The decree is titled “On the National Development Goals of the Russian Federation until 2030 and for a Longer Term until 2036.”

The new decree defines National Development Goals such as population preservation and family support, education of a patriotic and socially responsible society, a comfortable and safe living environment, environmental well-being, a sustainable and vibrant economy, technological leadership, as well as digital transformation of government administration, economy and social area, and others.

Decree Structure

The preamble to the decree states that it was signed with the aim of sustainable economic and social development of Russia, strengthening the sovereignty of its government, culture, values and economy, increasing the population and improving the living standard. Putin, according to the document, based the decree “on traditional Russian spiritual and moral values and the principles of patriotism, the priority of the person, social justice and equal opportunities, ensuring the security of the country and public safety, openness to the outside world, economic development based on fair competition, entrepreneurship and private initiative, high efficiency and technology”.

The decree consists of 11 paragraphs, many of which are broken down into separate subparagraphs with specific goals and targets.

Goals & Targets   

A national goal of Technology Leadership: provision of technological independence and establishment of new markets in such areas as bioeconomy, health preservation of citizens, food security, unmanned aerial systems, production and automation facilities, transport mobility (including autonomous transport systems), data economy and digital transformation, artificial intelligence, new materials and chemistry, looking-forward space technologies and services, and new energy technology (including nuclear).

The decree also sets a task to increase the level of the gross added value in real terms and the production index in the processing segment of the industry by at least 40% by 2030.

Domestic Economic Impact

The Russian economy will become the fourth largest economy in the world prior to 2030, with sustainable growth at a rate of at least 2% per year and gradual acceleration to 3%, which will yield approximately 20% growth by 2030, Russian First Deputy Prime Minister Andrei Belousov said at a meeting of Russian President Vladimir Putin with members of the government.

Belousov listed five main mechanisms (increasing productivity, increasing investment, growing non-resource non-energy exports, supporting SMEs, developing import substitution), which, in his opinion, will allow this GDP growth to be achieved.

“The President’s Address to the Federal Assembly formulated a key goal that must be achieved in the economic sphere, which is that, by 2030, our country should become one of the four largest economies in the world. Today, as you know, in terms of GDP at purchasing power parity, the Russian economy ranks fifth. Calculations show that Russia can become the fourth economy in the world, ahead of Japan, provided that sustainable growth is maintained of at least 2% per year with a gradual acceleration by the end of the period to 3%. In total, the country’s GDP needs to increase about 20% over the period until 2030.”

Western Opinion

Much of the United States and European commentary concerning Putin’s speech and Russia’s development goals focused on the ‘illegitimacy’ of Russia’s Presidential election rather than the actual economic and development content. Most concentrated on who boycotted the ceremony rather than Russia’s plans. See media responses from the Hill here, the Guardian here, and Time here. The question then becomes whether the West is actually listening to Russia’s well-publicized development plans and is taking note; or is content to dismiss them with fairly broad – and somewhat irrelevant – political hyperbole. Russia, it appears to us, is making long term plans while the West is reduced to standing on the sidelines making rude gestures.

Further Reading

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