Putin: the strategic goal is private investment, but there is no need to rush to privatization

The strategic goal of the development of the Russian economy is to attract private investment, but this does not mean that the authorities will rush to privatize state assets. This was stated by President Vladimir Putin during a speech at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF).

“I am betting on common sense,” the president answered when asked which companies the state is relying on – public or private. “And on the specific conditions in which the world is and the Russian economy. During crises, the share of the state is always growing all over the world, in all countries. And as soon as the situation stabilizes, the number of private business increases – both in the number of companies and in the volume of their turnover, ”said Mr Putin. He noted that there is nothing new for Russia here, and mentioned large companies with state participation – Gazprom and Rosneft.

“We perfectly understand and are aware of the fact that we must move towards privatization and further. This is what we do. Pay attention, I have already mentioned Rosneft, here is the head of Sberbank sitting opposite – we have almost half of foreign shareholders in the same place – 47% or 48%, ”the president said.

Speech by Vladimir Putin at SPIEF-2021. the main thing

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According to Vladimir Putin, Russia here is not fundamentally different from other countries. “In my speech, I said how we will support – including through large companies with state participation – small and medium-sized businesses,” said Mr Putin. “If we talk simply about the privatization processes, they also continue with us, we just try to do it carefully, based on the market conditions – what can be sold, how much can be sold and whether it is necessary to sell in the conditions in which we are,” said the president. According to him, “our cardinal goal is to develop market relations in the country and support private business, to attract private investors”.

According to the Accounts Chamber, the plan for the privatization of federal property for 2017-2019 in Russia was fulfilled only by 25%, which was the lowest figure in the last ten years. The inflow of funds to the federal budget from privatization has also declined. In 2017, it amounted to 15.1 billion rubles, and in 2019 – 12.1 billion rubles. In total, the federal budget received 40.8 billion rubles from the privatization of federal property for the period 2017–2019. (82.3% of budget assignments).

After the Accounts Chamber presented its report, it became known that the Ministry of Finance was working on simplifying the procedure for the sale of state property.