Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday announced a new government along with some constitutional reforms, international media reported. The announcement comes in less than a week after his longtime Prime Minster Dmitry Medvedev resigned from his post with his entire government.
The new government which Putin described as a break from the past brought in some new faces while retaining many of the senior ministers. The ministers who kept their jobs include the ministers of Finance, Foreign, Defence, Energy and Agriculture. On the other hand, Mikhail Mishustin who is a former tax chief was appointed as the New Prime Minister. Andrei Belousov was made the new deputy prime minister whereas Maxim Reshetnikov was appointed as the new Russian Economy minster. Putin also replaced the minister of telecommunications. He named Maksut Shadaev, until now a vice president of state telecoms operator Rostelecom, to the role.
According to media reports, Putin told the new government that the most important task is to increase the welfare of Russian citizens and strengthen their statehood and the position of the country in the world adding that all of those are absolutely attainable goals. He further said that they have achieved a very balanced government before saying that they have enough people who worked in the previous government, as well as a major renewal.
Abbas Gallyamov, a former government speechwriter said that the 53-year-old president had removed three strongly disliked people from his government - the ministers of culture and education and a deputy prime minister who oversaw sport at a height of doping scandal reported international media. Furthermore, Gallyamov took to Facebook to write that previously, Kremlin claimed that it did not care about people while making appointments but it has changed over time before saying that the Russsian government does not want to irritate society. In the post, he also wrote that keeping some political heavyweights in the new government signalled that there is no change in the direction.
Critics have long said that the 53-year-old president wants to stay in some capacity to wield power even after his term ends in 2024. Speaking about the new government to international media, Putin said that the government of the new prime minister should focus on boosting the country’s economy and improving living standards.