View settings

Font size:
Site colours:


Official website of the President of Russia

News   /

Vladimir Putin gave a news conference following his visit to Surgut

March 3, 2000, Surgut

The Acting President gave his opinion on a number of important economic and political issues. He said that he would do everything in his power to prevent the disintegration of natural monopolies. On the other hand, he admitted they could be restructured, although no one should nourish an illusion that any strategically important asset might end up in private ownership.

Mr Putin believes a re-division of property is inadmissible in Russia today. In this context, he mentioned a priority goal to provide equal starting conditions for all investors, regardless of their market position or connections in the Government.

The Acting President said the Government was scheduled to meet in the near future to discuss the development of the Russian fuel and energy sector.

The Acting President touched upon a number of issues related to his running for President, Valentina Matvienko’s bid for St Petersburg governor, and the interaction between federal and local authorities.

As a presidential candidate, Mr Putin said he thought it unnecessary to conduct an extensive campaign or hire personal image experts in the run-up to the elections. “I could be making a mistake,” he said, “I know any election campaign is about advertising to a large extent. But I think that people working in positions of power must show their potential voters their worth by effective actions, not brainwashing.”

When asked about the Moscow special police force killed in Chechnya, the Acting President said it was a tragic accident which must not happen again. He said the competence of those responsible for our forces’ deployment and action planning has to be questioned. What we can do to prevent this from happening again is stop being careless, Mr Putin added.

March 3, 2000, Surgut