Statements by Vladimir Putin at the WEF on September 12, 2023: what the Russian President spoke about

Vladimir Putin's speech at the WEF plenary session is considered the president's second main economic speech of the year.  Photo: Pavel Bednyakov/POOL/TASS

Vladimir Putin’s speech at the WEF plenary session is considered the president’s second main economic speech of the year. Photo: Pavel Bednyakov/POOL/TASS

President’s speech at WEF in Vladivostok considered one of the year’s top two economics themed events. Comparable only to the speech at the St. Petersburg Forum at the beginning of summer. But this time his statements turned out to be even more political. Vladimir Putin answered questions both about the presidential elections next year and about the flight of Chubais…

Here are the main statements of the Russian leader:


Question: You are lucky: you have an Aurus, Niva and Volga, but many Russian officials will have to switch to domestic cars. In the 90s, such an attempt failed.

– There were no cars then, but now there are. Yes, they may be more modest than Mercedes or Audi, which they began to buy in huge quantities in the 90s, but nothing. You need to build a chain of who gets what, and drive a domestic car. This is fine. And it does not violate any WTO obligations; these are government procurements.

Of course, when we produced cars from foreign spare parts, what was ours? We will improve localization.

Aurus did. It is expensive because it is not produced much. It will go into production for real, and it will be half the price. Yes, it takes time, but it will develop on its own. And taxes within the country, and jobs.

When will we see officials in Russian cars? Now. They will start purchasing now.


Question: On the website of the founder of Yandex Volozh it is now written – “Israeli entrepreneur born in Kazakhstan.” There are other businessmen speaking out about SVO…

– This is due to the desire of these people to preserve their assets. He is in Israel, I can imagine: in order to live there at a good level, he is forced to make statements… He sat, was silent, and then decided. Does he have the right to express his position? Certainly. And here there are also nuances – you can take the position of our opponents and play along with them, causing damage to your country. Or you can behave differently. A person himself internally determines: who is he? Or does he want to feel like he is no longer Russian, not born in the Soviet Union? There must be a sense of conscience towards the country that gave him everything.


– They showed me large photographs from the Internet, where he is no longer Anatoly Borisovich Chubais, but Moisha Izrailevich. Why is he doing this? I don’t understand why he ran away? It may also be due to the fact that complex processes are taking place in the structure of nanotechnology, which he headed, and there is a huge financial hole, big numbers. Apparently, such activity from an economic point of view, from a financial point of view, seems to have failed for him.

But, thank God, there are no criminal cases or prosecutions there. Maybe he is afraid that this will all lead to criminal cases? Therefore, in Israel he even went illegal. Why the hell does he need this, I honestly don’t understand.


– In general, it is not possible anywhere: if the trend is negative, then it is difficult to overcome it… As for Russia, experts know: we have two huge declines in the birth rate. This is 1943–44, and the beginning of the 90s, when Chubais and his team were actively functioning. They did a lot for a sharp transition to a market economy in Russia. They did this with harsh measures, which led to the complete impoverishment of the people and a sharp drop in the birth rate: the same as during the Great Patriotic War.

These two big failures keep coming in waves, and from time to time we fall into this demographic hole. And now we are in such a phase.


– What is the main thing? We have never been colonialists anywhere! Our cooperation has always been built on an equal basis or with a desire to help and support. And those countries that are now trying to compete with us, they just pursued a completely different policy. And when people compare, of course, everything works out in Russia’s favor.

We have long recognized that this part of the policy of the Soviet Union (the suppression of the Hungarian uprising in 1956 and the entry of troops into Czechoslovakia in 1968 – Ed.) was erroneous and only led to tension. You cannot do anything that is in clear conflict with the interests of other peoples. But it is precisely this rake that the West is stepping on today.


– Regarding the “returnees”, the trend is good, we see it. I am very pleased that they are noticing this, that movement has begun and Russia is concentrating. This is very important – a feeling of belonging to your homeland.

If a talented person who could do something here left, we probably lost something. But on the other hand, I will honestly say that maybe it would be better for him to be abroad, whose interests he wants to serve, than to play on the brains of millions of citizens here and promote unconventional values.

160-170 cultural figures who disagreed with state policy went abroad. This is also connected with material things. After all, they bought houses there, apartments abroad, accounts there, people want to keep it, they are afraid of losing it.


– I know that our gold and foreign exchange reserves are frozen. Yes, we have already earned twice as much. But it’s not even about these $300 billion, it’s about undermining trust in those who did it.

And Russian companies must understand that it is safer to work here, so there is no need to step on the same rake. I am confident that those to whom I address understand me.


– I propose to increase the attractiveness of Far Eastern mortgages. Namely: to raise the upper limit of the loan to 9 million for those who want to purchase their own home with an area of ​​over 60 square meters. Initially, such a mortgage was intended only for young families, but since last year all teachers and doctors can get it. I propose to once again increase the coverage of this program to employees of Far Eastern defense industry enterprises. For all employees, regardless of age or marital status.


– Ukraine is conducting a so-called counter-offensive, there are no results, of course. There are big losses. One gets the impression that they are being pushed by Western curators in order to bite off as much as possible, sorry for the bad manners. And then, when all the resources – people, equipment, ammunition – are close to zero, stop the fighting, say: “We have been saying for a long time that we want negotiations.” And start these negotiations in order to replenish your resources.

Since the beginning of this counter-offensive, the loss of personnel (AFU – Ed.) is 71.5 thousand people. 543 tanks have already been lost, armored vehicles of various classes – almost 18 thousand.


– If the United States believes that Ukraine is ready for negotiations, then let them cancel the decree of the President of Ukraine, which prohibits negotiations; the president also issued a decree – he forbade himself and everyone else from negotiating.


We carried out partial mobilization (in the fall of 2022 – Ed.), 300 thousand were called up. Over the past 6-7 months, another 270 thousand people have voluntarily signed contracts. People come to military registration and enlistment offices every day, 1000-1500 people to sign a contract. Daily!


– We don’t row anyone at all. Who are we rowing? This law has been in force since 1937 in the USA – it’s almost a carbon copy. Only he is much more liberal. US law provides for criminal prosecution. What is a foreign agent in Russia? This is a person who is engaged in public activities for the money of a foreign state. The law only requires that it disclose its sources of funding. There is nothing like that here.


– We do not create military alliances, we are not friends against anyone, we are friends in the interests of our peoples.


– The point is that the Armenian leadership essentially recognized the sovereignty of Azerbaijan over Karabakh. And if so, what can we say? There’s nothing to say here. If Armenia itself recognized that Karabakh is part of Azerbaijan, what do we need?

Questions arise with the mandate of our peacekeepers – this is true. The mandate is still in effect. And issues of a humanitarian nature, preventing any kind of ethnic cleansing there, of course, have not gone away. I hope that the Azerbaijani leadership is not interested in ethnic cleansing.


– Nobody wants peace there, in Ukraine, because if the war stops, they will have to answer to the people for the economic and social component. But there’s nothing to show.


– Do they even understand what they are playing with? Are they provoking us to take some kind of response to Ukrainian nuclear facilities? In general, do the British leadership and the Prime Minister know what their intelligence services are doing in Ukraine? Or don’t they know? I also admit that the British intelligence services operate under the leadership of the Americans.

They (Ukrainian saboteurs sent to Russia for a terrorist attack on a nuclear power plant, but detained by the FSB – Ed.) showed during interrogation that they trained under the guidance of British instructors. I assure you that this is the complete, absolute, pure truth. These gavriks sit with us and give evidence. I know they will say that they are there at gunpoint. This is wrong. And the leadership of the British intelligence services knows that I am telling the truth. But I’m not sure whether the British leadership understands what this is?


– There will be no fundamental changes in the Russian direction in US foreign policy, no matter who is elected president. Trump says that he will solve the Ukrainian crisis in a few days, which cannot but rejoice. But the current authorities have already turned American society in an anti-Russian spirit and spirit. And now it will be very difficult to somehow turn this ship in the other direction.


– By law, our parliament must make a decision (on holding presidential elections. – Ed.) at the end of the year. When the decision is made, the elections are announced, the date is set – then we’ll talk.


– I don’t reveal secrets, I worked in the KGB.


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