Support The Moscow Times!

Putin Sees Return as Boost to Political System

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said his decision to return to the presidency next year would strengthen Russia’s political system.

“The decision that we took with Medvedev is absolutely right and won’t weaken but will strengthen the system of government in Russia,” Putin said in an interview with Chinese state media in Beijing on Tuesday. “We are counting on the support of the electorate.”

The prime minister also commented on U.S. Federal Reserve purchases of Treasuries, saying they are damaging the country’s fiscal discipline and the United States is taking advantage of the dollar’s “monopoly” as the main reserve currency.

“America is being parasitic with the dollar’s monopoly position. I didn’t say it’s a parasite on the world economy,” Putin said.

An announcement by Germany and France that they intend to support the euro is a “positive signal” as Europe struggles to resolve its debt crisis, Putin said. Troubles there are primarily political because Greece only represents 2 percent of the European Union’s economy, he said. European leaders will need to show “courage” to concentrate their political forces on finding a solution “because the people in those countries aren’t very happy,” Putin said.

Putin also blamed the United States and European Union for “political” delays to Russia’s bid to join the World Trade Organization. “This is a purely political issue now,” he said. “From our side, we’ve done everything.”

Read more