15 October 2018
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PRESS RELEASES AND NEWS

06.07.2017

Article by Vladimir Putin published in the German business newspaper Handelsblatt

Ahead of my trip to Germany to take part in the Summit of the Group of Twenty, I would like to share some thoughts about cooperation within the G20 framework with the readers of Handelsblatt, one of the most popular and reputable German newspapers.

Over the years of its existence, the Group of Twenty has established itself as an important mechanism for aligning the interests and positions of the world’s leading economies. By taking coordinated action, the G20 contributed to the adoption of necessary measures that not only helped overcome the financial and economic crisis, but also laid the foundation for improving global governance, which has found itself in dire straits for a number of reasons. Importantly, by working together we have been able to find solutions to a number of long-standing issues.

For instance, Russia highly values practical steps to counter base erosion and profit shifting to so-called ‘safe havens.’ All economies suffer from such practices. Irresponsible corporate behaviour of this kind affects the quality of life of millions of people, resulting in high social costs.

Implementation of the financial regulation reform is another achievement of the G20. For example, special regulations for those banks whose bankruptcy would be undesirable or too risky because of their size.

For the first time in history, supervision bodies started monitoring transactions in the non-bank, “shadow” financial sector. Decisions regarding the key attributes for preventing and overcoming bank sector crises, organising the work of deposit security agencies and a number of other initiatives have had a major impact.

Of course, the creation of the Financial Stability Board (FSB) was a major step forward. On the back of its efforts, financial regulation reform took on a system-wide dimension and became routine, while the FSB established itself as an important partner of the IMF in its regular risk assessment studies. The FSB’s creation led to the emergence of similar structures on the national level.

Even against the backdrop of growing geopolitical risks and uncertainty, the G20 has not become less efficient as a global governance tool. This is largely attributable to the exceptional responsibility demonstrated by its presiding countries in fulfilling their mission. I am saying this based, among other things, on Russia’s own experience, since our country chaired the Group of Twenty in 2013, and benefited from substantial support and encouragement from all of its partners.

The success of the G20 is based on respect for the opinions and position of each member, regardless of the size of its economy and its place in the international monetary and financial system. Constructive discussions and the search for compromise have become the signature style of the G20, the unwritten law of relations, which its current President – Germany – is also putting into practice.

The upcoming meeting of the G20 in Hamburg is an opportunity to discuss key issues on the global agenda. We share the priorities of Germany’s Presidency and we are ready to help implement them, provided this continuity is maintained.

We welcome the decision to expand the agenda addressed by the G20 to include sustainable development, climate change, countering terrorism and corruption, healthcare, migration and refugees. It is very important that the Group is giving more attention to the digital economy as a growth driver and a new factor of global governance thanks to China’s Presidency in 2016 and Germany’s Presidency this year.

We are facing several major challenges. The old economic models have all but exhausted their possibilities. Protectionism is becoming the norm, while unilateral, politically motivated restrictions on trade and investment, as well as technology transfer, are nothing but masked protectionism. We believe that these sanctions are not only doomed to fail, but also run counter to the G20 principles of cooperation in the interests of all countries.

I am confident that only open trade based on common norms and standards can stimulate global economic growth and the gradual improvement of interstate relations. Just as it is set forth in the fundamental principles of the World Trade Organisation’s activities.

The G20 is doing substantive work on combating climate change. Human activity is greatly increasing the burden on the planet’s environment and is hence complicating the achievement of sustainable development goals. As a leading country within the international climate process,

Russia has exceeded its commitments under the Kyoto Protocol. In other words, we have compensated the growing emission in other countries and regions. We view the Paris Agreement of April 2016 as a reliable international legal framework for a lasting climate settlement and intend to do our best to facilitate its implementation.

Over the past few years, the G20 has been working on the issue of migration. According to the UN, in 2017 labour migrants will remit over $500 billion to developing countries. This is three times more than the volume of official development assistance or foreign direct investment.

The G20 has been working on issues related to the migrants’ integration in the host countries’ labour markets, as well as their cultural adaptation and social protection. In addition, the G20 has formulated decisions this year that could help settle the issue of forced displacement. They are based on the strengthening of regional and global stability and the economic growth of the countries that are generating the unprecedented numbers of refugees.

Security of and in the use of ICTs is a new issue on the G20 agenda. Russia consistently advocates free access to communication technologies, including the Internet. We consider it highly important to protect human rights in the information space. At the same time, freedom in the digital sphere, just like in any other, should by no means be replaced by permissiveness and impunity. This leads to a rampage involving cyber-criminals, hacker groups and all those who encroach on the privacy of individuals or the sovereignty of states by using cutting-edge technologies.

Russia, which was among the first countries to note the danger of this challenge, has for several years been advocating the conclusion of universal international agreements under the UN auspices that are called on to combat these negative phenomena. We hope this will evoke a positive and interested response from other countries. The G20 agenda should also include digital literacy issues, a key element of protecting consumer rights in e-commerce.

I would like to note that various opportunities opened up by the digital economy and a switchover to new industrial and technological patterns simultaneously increase the gap in the development levels between rich and poor countries and aggravate inequality between various social strata. Therefore, our efforts should focus on people, their interests and concerns. I consider this to be a key-priority for G20 activities.

Obviously, the G20 can make a weighty contribution to strengthening the stability of the global economy and to maintaining its balanced development. Only by acting together and pooling our efforts can we overcome the current imbalances, ensure sustainable growth, develop fair trade and competition rules, reduce poverty and resolve acute social issues.

The Russian delegation will be actively involved in the work of the Hamburg summit, which I am sure will be highly productive. I wish our German colleagues every success in organising the summit. And, of course, we will team up with our G20 partners in implementing the agreements that will be reached at the meeting.

In conclusion, I would like to wish all Handelsblatt readers and all Germans health and prosperity.




LATEST EVENTS

13.10.2018 - Embassy Press Officer’s reply to a media question concerning the investigation of the death of Nikolay Glushkov

Q.: 12 October marks seven months since the death of Nikolay Glushkov. Does the Embassy have any new information on this case? A.: Unfortunately, once again we have to state that the British side continues to evade any sort of cooperation with Russia with regard to the investigation of the death of former Deputy Director General of “Aeroflot” Mr Glushkov that occurred on British soil on 12 March. The British authorities continue to ignore numerous Russian requests, including the official request of the Prosecutor General’s Office of the Russian Federation for legal assistance in the criminal case opened in Russia into the Nikolay Glushkov’s death. There are no answers to the Embassy’s proposals to arrange a meeting or consultations between the Investigative Committee, Prosecutor General’s Office of the Russian Federation experts and the Metropolitan Police representatives.


12.10.2018 - Ambassador Yakovenko’s introductory remarks at the press-conference on 12 October 2018

Ladies and gentlemen, In recent weeks we have received a number of media requests concerning the current state of bilateral affairs between Russia and the United Kingdom. I am also often asked how numerous anti-Russian statements by the British officials influence our approach towards the UK. Considering this, I have decided to invite you today to make respective short comments on these issues and answer your additional questions. Currently the relations between Russia and the UK are at a very low level. The reason for that lies in an aggressive anti-Ru ssian campaign launched by the current Tory government and supported by the British media.


09.10.2018 - Embassy Press Officer’s reply to a media question concerning the new Bellingcat’s investigation

Question: How would you comment on Bellingcat’s claims that it has “tracked down Alexander Petrov’s real identity”? Answer: The Foreign and Commonwealth Office has recently advised us to consider such publications and statements as a display of freedom of public debate into which the UK Government does not interfere. There have already been reports that the Home Office and Metropolitan Police would not comment on these “speculations”. This is exactly the case when we should follow the example of our British colleagues.


08.10.2018 - Embassy Press Officer’s reply to a media question concerning the UK authorities’ reaction to Russia’s official requests following recent flagrant media publications

Question: The Embassy declared its intent to request clarifications from the British side following the recent accusations of cyberattacks, and the media reports on preparations for retaliatory cyberstrikes against targets in Russia. Has there been any response? Answer: Today we have received a reply from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office which implies that, as before, the British side is not going to provide us with any details that may serve as the basis of the accusations. In this case, we are not in a position to make comments on the essence of those accusations.


05.10.2018 - Embassy comment on another groundless British accusation against Russia

On 4 October, UK Permanent Representative to OPCW Peter Wilson speaking on behalf of Minister for Europe Sir Alan Duncan claimed that the “GRU” allegedly “attempted to compromise UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office computer systems via a spear phishing attack” and “targeted computers of the UK Defence and Science Technology Laboratory”. The same day the UK National Cyber Security Centre stated that “multiple email accounts belonging to a small UK-based TV station were accessed and content stolen” and “the GRU was almost certainly responsible”.Today, the Embassy has forwarded a Note Verbale to the FCO demanding that the UK Government produces and immediately shares with the Russian side hard evidence and proofs supporting those claims, and informs about sources used to draw such conclusions. We have reminded, in particular, that Russia had repeatedly proposed expert consultations on cybersecurity in order to address UK’s concerns, if any.


04.10.2018 - Embassy Press Officer’s reply to a media question concerning the BBC journalist Mark Urban’s book on Sergei Skripal

Q.: How would you comment on the Mark Urban’s book on Sergei Skripal published on 4 October? A.: We intend yet to study this book. At the same time, it is a well known fact that Mark Urban has close links with British secret services. This gives us grounds for considering this book as an attempt to compensate for Sergei Skripal’s public non-appearance as the key witness to the Salisbury incident. Instead of facts, the public is again offered speculation and guesses.


04.10.2018 - Embassy Press Officer’s reply to a media question concerning the recent anti-Russian statement by the Foreign Office

Question: How would you comment on today’s statement by the Foreign Office accusing Russia of worldwide cyber-attacks on massive scale? Answer: This statement is reckless. It has become a tradition for such claims to lack any evidence. It is yet another element of the anti-Russian campaign by the UK Government.


03.10.2018 - Embassy Press Officer’s reply to a media question on INF Treaty

Question: How would you comment on the latest statements by US officials on Russia’s alleged non-compliance with INF Treaty? Answer: Russia has repeatedly reaffirmed its commitment to the Treaty on the Elimination of Intermediate-Range and Shorter-Range Missiles (INF Treaty). The US allegations of Russian non-compliance relate to one particular missile type. While we have assured Washington on multiple occasions that the mentioned missile does not violate INF, the US has never explained the exact reasons of their preoccupation. These allegations divert attention from the American actions that are breaching a number of INF provisions.


01.10.2018 - Embassy Press Officer’s reply to a media question concerning new anti-Russian statements by Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt

Question: How would you comment on the new anti-Russian statements made by Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt on Sunday at the annual Conservative Party conference in Birmingham? Answer: We do not in the least wish to comment on another portion of the aggressive anti-Russian accusations made by Jeremy Hunt, which are a far cry from reality.


01.10.2018 - Embassy Press Officer’s reply to a media question on a new UK Defence Arctic Strategy

Q: How do you assess the statement made by Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson on UK intentions to develop a new Defence Arctic Strategy? A: We call on British authorities, who have recently been actively promoting the concept of Global Britain, to pursue their ambitions in other fields.



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