MOSCOW, October 15 (RIA Novosti)
- Putin warns governors on housing, utility hikes
- Russians Protest Against Utility Hikes
- Putin promises stable utility prices, clear tariff formula
- Medvedev warns of 'disaster' in public utilities
The critical situation in the housing and utilities sector is Russia’s most pressing problem with inflation only coming second, a pollster said on Monday.
Over 55 percent of respondents in a survey conducted by the All-Russia Center for the Study of Public Opinion on Social and Economic Issues said housing and utilities tariffs were their main concern, accounting for one-tenth of an average household’s budget and constantly growing.
Experts forecast electricity prices will rise 12-15 percent by July 2013, heating prices will be up 8-10 percent, and natural gas prices will keep growing at a rate of 15 percent a year.
Inflation comes second among Russian concerns, followed by the spread of drugs and corruption.
Around half of respondents said they were concerned by inflation-related problems, up from 44 percent at the start of this past summer.
Living standards appear to be the last on the list of Russians’ five top pressing issues.
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The main event of the third day of the 11th meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club in Sochi was the closing session with President Vladimir Putin. The atmosphere was calm and open, despite the current political tensions and the Russia-West confrontation. The Russian president said that it corresponded to the spirit of the Valdai Club.