The plenary session of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) under the motto 'Creating a Sustainable Development Agenda' has opened.
Among participants in the plenary session will be Russian President Vladimir Putin, Chinese President Xi Jinping, Bulgarian President Rumen Radev; Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan; Slovakia's Prime Minister Peter Pellegrini; and UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres. Russian journalist and TV host Sofiko Shevarnadze will moderate the plenary session.
Russian presidential aide Yury Ushakov said earlier that the Russian president will talk about main problems of the world economy and politics, and discuss the National Projects being implemented in Russia.
Vladimir Putin in his speech at a plenary session welcomed all the participants, the correspondent of Vestnik Kavkaza reported. The president expressed his gratitude to all guests of SPIEF "for their attention and friendship towards Russia, for their commitment to joint work and business cooperation, always based on pragmatism, understanding of mutual interest, and, of course, mutual trust, candor and clarity of positions."
He noted that Russia’s development plan cannot work outside of the global context. "Russia’s development cannot be built outside of the global context, without taking into account the domestic, national and global agenda, due to its scale, history, culture, human and economic potential," the Russian leader said.
According to the Russian leader, SPIEF is a platform for the discussion of different views on the state of the global economic system. Putin stressed that Russia does not see it as "an abstract conversation."
According to the head of state, the current model of world economic relations is in crisis, although the global economy has been growing in recent years.
"Formally, the recent growth of the global economy is marked by positive values: in 2011-2018, the annual growth averaged 2.8%, in recent years it was slightly more than 3%. But, in our opinion, the leaders of states, we all need to frankly admit: despite this growth, the existing model of international economic relations, unfortunately, is still in crisis," President Putin said.
He noted that global trade has ceased to be the driver of global economic development as direct and indirect protectionism rises. "In fact, global trade has ceased to the absolute engine of global economic development while a new engine, whose role ultramodern technologies could play, is still being tested, and is not running at full capacity," Putin stressed.
"The situation around Huawei, for example, which is not only being sidelined, but blatantly squeezed out of the global market," Putin noted, adding that that is already dubbed in certain circles as the first technological war of the upcoming digital era.
The President noted that digitalization is aimed at widening horizons for all who are open for changes, "though here barriers are also being established, unfortunately." "Direct bans on purchases of high-tech assets are being introduced, even in education admission for foreign students is restricted on certain professions," the head of state stressed.
"Russia is ready for challenges and changes. We are looking to broad and equal cooperate with everyone fully and equally," Putin said.
This forum is organized by Russia's Rosneft and China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) with the support of the Roscongress Foundation. Its aim is to develop dilaogue between Russia and China in the sphere of energy, increase effectiveness and expand the portfolio of joint projects, attract investments.