Russian President Vladimir Putin sent an important televised address to the people in which he put forward a series of social and economic proposals aimed at stopping the spread of the Corona virus in the country and limiting its effects.
In his speech, Putin stressed that the top priority in the current situation lies in preserving the lives, health and safety of Russian citizens, indicating the need for the state to take proactive measures in order to achieve this goal.
The President called on all citizens to strictly adhere to the directives issued by the government and health authorities in order to reduce their risk of contracting the virus.
Putin also suggested postponing the date for the popular vote on the constitutional amendments that he had put forward earlier this year, stressing that the decision on the new date for voting will be taken later in consultation with experts.
Among the social and economic measures put forward by Putin in order to reduce the spread of the virus and support the country’s economy, projects and citizens in overcoming the difficult stage, the Russian president announced that next week (from March 28 to April 5) will be a paid vacation, throughout the country, noting at the time. The same indicated that all vital infrastructure, including public transport, government institutions, and medical institutions will not cease to function during this period.
Putin assured citizens that the safest thing they could do during this period was to stay home.
Addressing employers in Russia, Putin stressed the need to maintain the stability of the labor market in the country and prevent a sharp rise in the level of unemployment, stressing that the Russian economy is passing today like other economies of the world with strong negative pressure due to the virus, and the government must support those facing the risk of losing their jobs.
Putin’s proposals in the economic field also included a series of tax and bureaucratic facilities offered to citizens of various classes and medium and small enterprises, including:
- Maintain all payments and social benefits that Russian citizens currently enjoy in the next six months without presenting identification papers.
- Preserve all veterans ’rewards on the occasion of the 75th anniversary of the victory and spend these rewards for them before Victory Day on May 9th.
- Increase unemployment compensation to at least be at the minimum wage level.
- Sick leave compensation must not be less than the monthly minimum wage.
- Banks must grant vacation for personal and housing loans in the event that the monthly income of an individual falls by more than 30%.
- Deferment of taxes, excluding value-added tax, for the small and medium-sized businesses for a period of 6 months.
- Freezing the bankruptcy of companies facing difficulties within a period of 6 months.
- Imposing a tax of 15% on profits and revenues of companies that are transferred outside the country (offshore).
- Imposing a 13% tax on interest on bank deposits.
Putin addressed the citizens by saying: “All measures that are being taken now and will be taken in the future will bear fruit only if we show solidarity and realize the difficulty of the current situation, if the state and society act together, and if each of us does everything they can do.”
Putin concluded his speech by reminding citizens of the personal responsibility they bear for the safety of their families and neighbors and who need support and assistance, adding: “In general, in such solidarity lies the strength of our society, the credibility of mutual support and the effectiveness of our response to the challenge we now face.”