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tv   Senate Leaders Pay Tribute to Departing Women Senators and President Obama  CSPAN  December 23, 2016 10:24pm-11:01pm EST

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being played in the middle east? so, this alliance, will it be able to play a key role in the resolution of the syrian conflict? and the second question -- in october 2015, you made some agreements with erdogan about syria and the russian plane was downed. and then, normalization started and then there was a coup attempt. so now turkey and russia are , cooperating with aleppo. the russian ambassador was in ankara. do you think this was a coincidence? president putin: let's start with the last part, with the tragedy that took place recently. the assassination of our ambassador.
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i think it was actually an attempt on russia, russian-turkish relations. i was skeptical of the idea that the russian aircraft was shot down without the consent of the turkish leadership. as you remember, some of them stated that it was just done by some individuals who wanted to interfere with relations. but right now, i am changing -- i might change my opinion. everything is possible. you might have destructive elements in the government -- a deep level of infiltration in the turkish army, law enforcement officials.
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i certainly do not want to find a scapegoat and point a finger at somebody, but that is really happening. will that challenge russian-turkish relations? no, because we are fully aware of the importance of russian-turkish relations and we will do everything to develop them. certainly, we will keep in mind the interest of turkey, but also own interests.r in the past year, after we normalized the relations, we were able to find the compromises we needed so we can continue finding consensus going forward. as for aleppo, indeed, the situation was resolved and, as you remember, some of the villages that were deblocked,
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and these villages were populated by a shia majority. and certainly a big role was played by the leadership of iran and the president of turkey. but certainly without russia, it , would be impossible -- i do not want to brag about that, but that is true. so this cooperation certainly plays a critical role in resolving the aleppo crisis. and what is also of paramount importance is the final stage. i got the report of the defense minister. there were no hostilities. hostilities were stopped. dozens of thousands of people were evacuated in aleppo. and it is not just the radical
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groups. it was women and children who were evacuated. we are talking about 100,000 people. and also, thousands of other people were evacuated from other exchange for this authorization. this is the biggest, again, the biggest humanitarian operation in the world, and certainly, it could not have been achieved without the cooperation by the turkish president, iran, and certainly, we had the goodwill and the work that was conducted by the syrian president, mr. assad, and his government. so, practice showed that this
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kind of cooperation is indeed in demand that has been very helpful. we need to think about egypt, jordan, saudi arabia. and certainly should not forget about the u.s. that is why we are ready to work with every stakeholder. further on, we need to sign an agreement on cease-fire across all the territory of syria. after that, we would need it to start practical negotiations and political reconciliation. the capital ofat kazakhstan could be a venue and the president of turkey agree to sad said yes.
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conditions for this and i really hope that this will happen. >> this is becoming a habit. channel one. >> my question is about taxes. this is income tax and property tax and they've been increased over the years. apart from the taxes that we pay, there are also certain fees and tariffs like building renovations or health care. it is totally free, but some services are not. or education, additional
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education, we have to pay money for. or parking in moscow. of course, in the center, everyone is used to parking, paying for parking, but now the same will probably happen in residential areas. so, are we to expect something new this year? president putin: you have to divide -- differentiate between taxes and nontax fee. without the income tax, the individual income tax, you have the transport tax and the property tax -- single fee taxes for individuals. they remain among the lowest in europe. let's start with income tax for individuals. 30% of flat trade.
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you might remember it was introduced back in 2001. i also had doubts. i fear that we would lose a large share of income because those would have to pay less. what about social equality? things like that. i mentioned that several times. i would like to reiterate it. after we introduced the flat rate of 30% of income tax for individuals, the tax rate increased seven times. and the money that we received in our budget is then redistributed for social protection. this ensures social equality.
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can we move to a different tax rate? perhaps. perhaps it would be done someday, but at this point in time, it does not make sense because when we do it then we might get entangled with the differentiation and eventually this would lead to less money in our budget, less tax collected. we could achieve these purposes in other ways. for example, increasing the tax on luxurious vehicles. we have done that. we can fine-tune that system. increasing taxes on expensive property.
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so, we have those tools. now, going back to the second part of the fees and charges. am i aware of this? yes. tariffs, fees which are assessed at the level of municipalities and we have thousands of them or the region, it is a problem. we have a solution. i will tell you what it is. the pressure has been growing. you need to have a big picture. the government has been instructed and will set up a registry by june next year so we have a clear picture of what is happening in the country, regions and municipalities in terms of the load so we can fine-tune it. as for the federal level, we
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have froze the growth in tariffs. so like energy bills. certainly it will have an impact on utility bills. the key tool to curb the growth in tariffs is to decrease inflation. i have said previously we will be record low in the history of russia. if we continue to curb inflation and keep it down to, say, 4% we will settle the situation with tariffs. let's move on to other areas.
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like the chinese say, that is true. >> good afternoon, mr. putin. i'm from the website. i have a question that our people are very concerned with. we have a lot of problems and traffic jams. it's the only city in europe that doesn't have a ring road. so, our government wants to initiate a fund raiser to build the road. could we solve this problem on the federal level? then, the question about coal
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mining. so, now we believe that coal affects the environment and we need to stop using it. so, what's your take on the future of the basin and coal mining? president putin: actual redevelopment of infrastructure is an issue. it is about building infrastructure and at the same time it has to be sustainable and have no impact on the environment. if you have any sponsor, any investor, we will try to support that both in the regional and federal level. we'll look at the proposal that has been coming out to the region. we can do this project if we can for the region. we know there has been a lot of pressure on the environment. as for coal -- everyone has been saying we need to switch to
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alternative energy sources. everybody is working on that, including hydrogen and wind and solar energy too. we are into it. just recently, i went to a plant. they've been implementing high-tech technology. the european commission reduced substitutes to the industry because it is extremely expensive. we need to modernize and improve the technology. for miners and other workers, the world uses much more coal
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than oil and gas. i think even more than oil and gas combined. coal remains an integral part of the world energy system. a considerable part. you rightly said we need to improve technology to decrease the impact on the environment. i know your region is moving in that direction. many enterprises switching to new high-tech processes technology. so that they could create a coal powder that is used. i'm sure we will move in that area then your region and miners from other regions will have a promising future.
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they will be in demand. they will have a lot of workload in the positive way. that will help drive our economies, the metal sector. the metal sector is going through downs, but i'm sure it will have a bright future. >> following up on that question, i'd like to ask about oil. what is going to be the economics of the oil prices? right now, it is $45, $50 a barrel. is the russian budget ready to -- when we decrease the oil production as we agreed with opec?
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president putin: well, as far as i know, crude is not $45, it is $55 a barrel. i looked it up this morning. our budget was based on a conservative forecast of $40 a barrel. so, we returned to the first few questions we had on our agenda today, as bureaucrats say. we can see the results we have achieved were achieved because the real situation turned out to be more complex than we expected
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because our 2016 budget was based on the assessment of $50 a barrel. the actual price was $40 a barrel. we saw a positive change in liquidity and inflation rate. we kept it in control. so, this factor played an important role in what happened with the economy. the situation was worse than average internationally, but the results are better which means our economy adjusted for the
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situation. nobody knows what the price was going to be like. it is a complicated issue. there are many different dynamics here and impossible to predict almost anything. well, the ministry gave its forecast that oil surplus will be up by the end of 2017 and prices will stabilize. we expect oil to stabilize at the current level. now, how our economy will respond as opposed to oil cuts. well, we considered the situation before we took this step. our production levels were quite high. the commitment that we may was 300,000 barrels over the period from january until june. this will not have a major effect on our overall production. this is totally acceptable for russia. but we expected prices will go up as a result. we already see this happening. if the situation stays this way,
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the effect for the country, the budget will be like this. if the price goes up by $10, the budget will receive an additional 1.74 trillion ruble in revenue. oil companies will get additional revenue of $750 billion. as a result, we will all win or benefit. i think this is the first time opec has made a decision like that in eight years. the fact we agreed to work with
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opec helped. we will continue working with opec. we will fulfill our obligations, our commitments but we are not members of this cartel. we will stay in contact with opec and honor our commitments. at the same time, we are free to act as we see fit, but we will only take action after we achieve certain results and we have been achieving positive results so far. we think this is helpful to opec members and nonmembers. >> perhaps, go to the central sector. >> please do not interfere with the cameraman's work. >> good afternoon, mr. putin. for our newspaper, editor-in-chief. first of all, i'd like to thank you on behalf of our leaders for what you are doing for our national defense and our
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national sovereignty. we listen to what you say very carefully. when you say if someone wants to live under semi-occupation, we are not going to. we agree totally.
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we think there are some problems, domestic problems in our country. that we could probably characterize in the following manner -- recently, mass media uses a phrase that has an adjective as hybrid informational. the second word is war. so, our people have a good memory and remembers our history. we went through some wars where we came out as winners. the first thing we remember is
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the second world war. making parallels to the current situation, i'd like to ask you a question. now our economy, our industries and our governmental bodies acts in accordance with the decisions made by international organizations and consulting from international companies. so, we learned about the foreign agents and foreign influence. first, the issue with consulting remains. our readers have been wondering should we be doing that here as well? beside on our own, what to do and which way to go. it is not only about the
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economy, it has to do about ideology as well. the question raised here -- the influx of imports of various kinds results in a lot of problems that we have mentioned today and it affected our traditional values. so, we think that we need import substitution in this area. recently, this question has been becoming more and more urgent. what are the measures being taken? president putin: this is extremely important. we all know what people think traditionally, but kazahkstan
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has always been this way. i can remind everybody that during the 1812 war, they provided calvary, all of their male population joined the army. similar things happened during the second world war. as far as economic sovereignty is concerned, this is not just about import substitution. our financial institution should be self-sufficient as well. credit cards. there are many things that we take as a given and we thought they were separate from geopolitics, but it turned out this was not true when we needed to use political pressure, they
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started using economic factors to put pressure on us. rating agencies -- this is also very important. of course, we should consider that as well. this is not a simple issue, but we definitely need our own national rating agency. we should develop consulting as well. we are actually doing that already, but it is important to make sure the companies are transparent and respected by the business community. otherwise, it makes no sense to have such companies.
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if we get rid of those foreign companies that are respected in our country and internationally, our businesses will suffer because what the assessments provided by russian companies is nobody is going to respect their opinion if they can't prove their competitiveness. we have been there before and we will see fall in investment. we will certainly work on that.
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i guess you were going to ask about difficulties and the tragedies of the past of the plane crash, right? what are you going to ask about? >> good afternoon. i'm from poland. a few years ago in this very room, i asked you about the plane crash and you said you would talk to the investigative committee. what did they say? we know that the investigation continues, but it has been seven years. probably all the tests and exercise have been conducted. it is only a political decision that is left to make, but that is only up to you. recently, some people say that poland has been distancing itself from the eu and the same has been said about other countries. so, if europe is weaker, is this beneficial for russia? is russia going to use this in its own interest? president putin: let's start with your first question first. yes, the investigation is underway. now, the second question, let's stop speculations.
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this was a terrible tragedy and i read through the transcript of the conversation between the pilot and one of the president's guards. he went into the cockpit. i personally read through the transcript and this man who went into the cockpit, i don't remember the name of this person, and they said we want to land. the pilot said i cannot land here, it is impossible. i cannot land here. and then the person, the presidential aide, said do whatever you have to do but we have to land right now, right here. there is no need to speculate anymore. it is a terrible tragedy. we did everything necessary to make sure this incident is properly investigated. i wish you would use this to
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create pressure, to create frictions between our two countries. it is crystal clear. if there are certain matters that are not fully clear, let investigators look into this matter. now, you also asked about a weaker euro and what we think about it. of course, we want to have a reliable, strong, and independent partners in europe. but, when we build our relationship with europe -- if they tell us we need to go to a third country, why talk to europe at all? recently, a european politician said all european nations are nations but not all of them realize that. i don't agree with this idea
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because you have great nations in europe. i don't want to mention anybody unless i offend anybody and we treat them as such. whatever europe does inside itself, how they build their relationships with each other, it is not about business. you know better than myself that they have sovereign nations with a small infrastructure or a quasi-federal state. there are two concepts. like i said elsewhere, the number of provisions of that are mandatory for all the countries make up more decisions made than what the supreme council in the soviet union. i don't know whether it is good or bad for europe. it is not up for us to decide
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that. it is up to you. yes, there are differences about migrants, the migrant crisis. other things. again, it is up to europeans themselves to decide about that. there are certain countries in europe who object to the current migrant policy and they want to the involved in the decision-making process more. they don't want to be imposed. they think those decisions are unacceptable. countries like poland, hungary. they should discuss those issues. not with us. they should discuss with brussels, other european capitals, but whatever the situation is like within europe, we are always interested in developing our relationships
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with europe and we will always pursue that. of course, we want europe to speak with one voice. we want to have a partner we can talk to. this is what matters to us, but if we don't have such a partner, we will just talk bilaterally to each of the european nations separately. this is what is happening now. we take up some of the issues with the european commission and then we take up other issues on the national level with european countries individually. we are happy with this kind of arrangement. it is up to europeans to decide what they do internally. >> it is like a dictatorship, huh? >> good afternoon. the topic of interest in -- for some countries, it is important
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but some it is not. armenia manages to benefit from it. farmers went bankrupt. one more question -- this one is about russia. so, you remember that there were girls with tortured animals. we have a human right ombudsman and other people so maybe we should have an animal rights organization and have a legal framework for that. president putin: as far as
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animal rights, our concern is right of course, but dog owners, pet owners, people have rights. humanitarian issues, humane treatment of animals, this is a separate issue. of course, we need that as well, but that is a separate matter. there are proposals to introduce a tougher punishment and tougher regulations and i would support that. there should be some regulations enforced. we should not go to extremes. it has to be reasonable. to the first part of your question, i think all the members of the eu benefit from what we do as far as integration is concerned. actually, they have their difficulti


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