Russian President Dmitry Medvedev wanst to reduce the influence of state firms on the country's investment climate© RIA Novosti. Sergey Guneev
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has said government ministers have until July 1 to give up their seats on boards of some of the country's biggest state firms, the Kremlin said on Saturday.
The Kremlin insists the move is part of efforts to "improve Russia's investment climate."
But experts suggest Medvedev is trying to gain ground ahead of the 2012 presidential election by dismissing some of Prime Minister Vladimir Putin's closest allies as oil and gas regulators and company directors. Putin has hinted he may try to elbow Medvedev aside at the polls.
In a speech carried by state news channel Rossiya 24 earlier this week, Medvedev said he wanted all ministers to vacate their seats, including Deputy Prime Minister Igor Sechin as chairman of state oil firm Rosneft and Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin as chairman of Russia's second largest bank VTB Bank and diamond miner Alrosa.
Transport Minister Igor Levitin will be replaced at Russia's flagship airline Aeroflot and Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport, while First Deputy Prime Minister Viktor Zubkov should resign from the Russian Agricultural Bank.
The entire list of the officials to lose their seats was published on the Kremlin website.
The move has rekindled rumors of a growing rift between Medvedev and Putin, who have recently disagreed on a number of issues, most notably on the second conviction of former oligarch and Putin critic Mikhail Khodorkovsky and on the UN-mandated air strikes on Libya.
MOSCOW, April 2 (RIA Novosti)
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- firstname.lastname@example.orgPolitics in Russia always surprises me22:26, 02/04/2011If RIA Novosti could cover more political topics like this I would be interested in reading them. Why they interest me is that things political seem to work very differently in Russia.
For instance I tend to think of the relationship of President Dmitry Medvedev and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin as I would President Barack Obama and Vice President Joseph Biden.
but it really is not like that at all when both Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin are vying for the same position as President or so it appears.
With regards to a difference of opinion on different issues, I think that this is quite healthy and normal. No two people should ever think alike in power as it is their differences that make for a strong leadership.
So the tactics that Russian President Dmitry Medvedev is taking with regards to the other ministers interests me.
My question for RIA Novosti is this. How can these ministers on the boards of the companies effect the election? Can the ministers use their influence to get employees to vote a certain way?
Perhaps an article on how upper level political power works would be interesting with regards to Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.
Why would one want the power of President when the younger one has been groomed for the position.
And what about other political competition from other Russian parties. Is there any competition other than Dmitry Medvedev and Vladimir Putin?