Vladimir Putin: 2003 budget is rather optimistic

Russian President Vladimir Putin has congratulated the government on the final adoption of the 2003 federal budget by the Russian parliament.

The completion of the budget process is "a good result", the president said at the traditional Monday meeting with the cabinet of ministers. According to Vladimir Putin, "the budget is drawn up rather optimistically" and "is based on the reality of the world and Russian economy." A budgetary surplus of 0.6 per cent of the GDP is projected for 2003 period, the president added. "This is a very good start to solve not only economic, but also social problems," the Russian leader stressed.

Implementing the 2003 budget and "thinking and operating with such beautiful phrases as surplus and macro-economic stability, we should not forget what it will be like in practice," the president stressed. Every Russian citizen "should feel the positive influence of the government's work on his everyday life and personal income", Vladimir Putin noted.