Vladimir Putin is sure that the Russian gas branch can "perform far more efficiently and bring in greater profits to the country". Speaking at a conference at Novy Urengoi on Tuesday, the president stated that the most "painful symptoms" in the industry now are a fall in the output of gas and its deliveries to consumers, growing production costs, and falling cost efficiency. According to Putin, old deposits are being depleted, and the problem of renewing the resources base is becoming increasingly acute. The president noted that Russia's gas reserves are one-third of the world's but "these impressive figures made many forget such criteria as thriftiness and efficiency". Putin also emphasised that the energy component of economic growth is all-decisive.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov announced the termination of diplomatic relations with NATO at a time when US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin ended a meeting in Georgia with his counterpart