‘The USA is sawing the branch on which they are sitting’

Mikhail Kotlyar

Following the results of the plenary session of the Russian Energy Week forum, Vladimir Putin answered questions from Headley Gamble, a journalist from the American TV channel CNBC. What else did the President of Russia talk about – in the review of Gazeta.Ru.
On the 2024 elections and his successor
Gamble asked Vladimir Putin if he is considering any candidacy as his successor as president and if he wants to remain the head of state until he turns 84 ( Putin could potentially remain president of Russia until 2036, he is now 69 years old – Gazeta.Ru “). In response, the head of state noted that he traditionally prefers not to answer this question.
“There is still a lot of time before the next elections. Conversations on this topic are destabilizing the situation. The situation must be calm, stable, so that all government bodies, all state structures work confidently, calmly look into the future, “Putin said.
At the same time, he confirmed that the Russian Constitution, which was amended in the summer of last year, allows him to run for the next presidential term, but no decisions have yet been made on this matter.
About giving up the dollar
The United States is making the mistake of using its currency as a sanctions instrument: thus, it actually leaves other countries no choice but to switch to settlements in other currencies, Putin stressed. Thus, he commented on the exclusion of the dollar from the National Wealth Fund.
“When other countries that use the dollar as a reserve currency or as a settlement instrument see what is happening, they themselves have anxiety that the dollar can be used in their relation in the same way,” the president said. According to him, because of this, even Washington’s closest partners are beginning to reduce the share of the dollar in their reserves and transactions.
The United States, according to the Russian president, is “cutting the branch on which it is sitting,” since the use of the dollar as a universal or re-serve currency throughout the world is its competitive advantage. “They underm-ine it in this way, in the int-erests of the momentary po-litical situation, they damage their strategic economic interests,” Putin added.
At the same time, he assured that Moscow has no interest in completely abandoning the dollar, in particular, it is still needed for payments for energy resources. “But if the policy of the American authorities continues as I have already said, then we will not have to do anything, the United States will undermine confidence in the dollar,” Putin said.
About cryptocurrency transactions
According to the head of state, it is too early to talk about full-scale financial transactions in the world market in cryptocurrency. So Putin answered the question about the assumption of Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak that in the near future it will be possible to see about oil contracts not in dollars, but in other currencies and, possibly, in digital ones.
“Cryptocurrency, of course, can be a unit of account, but it is very unstable. In order to transfer funds from one place to another – yes, but to trade, especially to trade in energy resources, in my opinion, it is still premature, ”the President noted.
One of the main problems of such transactions, in his opinion, is the insecurity of cryptocurrencies. At the same time, Putin agreed with the fact that cryptocurrencies have a right to exist, as well as settlements in th-em. “We will see how it wi-ll go further, maybe someday it can also be a means of accumulation. We see this market fluctuate. It’s a bit early today, ”he added.
On the two main problems of the country
The most important problem in today’s Russia is the income of citizens, and the main task facing the authorities is to increase them, the president said. According to him, it must be solved without populism, not by simple linear methods.
“This is a long-term task. We are not going to act with populist methods, but it is on the basis of qualitative economic growth that we are going to solve the main social problems, including increasing the incomes of Russian citizens, ”Putin said.
The second problem follows from the first problem – the demographic one. Here, according to the president, it will be necessary to resolve issues of health care, education, support for families with children. To solve both problems, a serious economic base must be laid under them – this is exactly what the Russian authorities intend to do in the coming years.
About Navalny
A CNBC reporter asked Putin if he wanted to raise the living standards of opposition leader Alexei Navalny ( Navalny is currently serving a sentence in a colony in the Vladimir region in the Yves Rocher case, he has repeatedly complained about the conditions of his detention in a correctional institution – Gazeta.Ru). To this, the president remarked that Navalny is now in prison.
“Not the best conditions, but he’s not the only one. Besides him, there are other people who also violated Russian laws, and we are not going to put anyone in any exclusive conditions, including those who hide behind political activities, ”Putin said.
About the new alliance of the USA, Britain and Australia
The newly formed defense alliance AUKUS, which includes the United States, Britain and Australia to counter China’s expanding influence in Southeast Asia, is undermining stability in the region, Putin said.
“In my opinion, being friends with each other is good, but“ being friends against someone ”is bad. This undermines the stability that we all talk about and we all care about, ”he explained.
At the same time, the President noted that the creation of the alliance is a fait accompli, and now the rest of the players in the international arena can only hope that the situation with this bloc will not develop according to an unpredictable scenario and will not cause additional tension in Asia.