Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has laid out a $90 billion economic package to combat the worldwide financial crisis on the home
front. Mr. Putin told the
state Duma 2009 will be rough for Russia.
speech, broadcast live on state television, Prime Minister Putin became
the latest international figure to tackle the financial crisis
publicly, using a new law requiring an annual address from the prime
minister to take on the subject.
Mr. Putin said that while the
global crisis is here to stay for a while, the government plans to
spend $43 billion to help a weakened banking system as well as on
social programs. Areas of the economy that are viewed as strategic can
also expect a boost from federal funds, including the aircraft
Describing a plan which includes increased pensions
and provides more housing to Russians, Putin called on people
to not lose hope and become demoralized.
"A surreal nightmare will begin if we disturb the balance between social justice and economic expediency," he said.
said the threat of a banking crisis had receded, after the stock market
had plummeted and external creditors stopped lending, bringing a halt
to many projects.
While most of the Duma members are from the
54-year-old prime minister's party, United Russia, Gennady Zyuganov,
head of the Communist Party, took the opportunity to criticize the
"We say openly that if the government continues to
apply its monetarist policies, it deserves to be dismissed," Zyuganov