Medvedev touts modernization

Nov. 12, 2011 at 3:51 PM
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HONOLULU, Nov. 12 (UPI) -- Russian President Dmitry Medvedev pledged the modernization of Russia would continue after he leaves office, an aide said Saturday.

Medvedev offered that assurance during talks with business representatives at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Hawaii, aide Arkady Dvorkovich said, RIA Novosti reported.

Medvedev is expected to become prime minister, and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin is expected to become president after March 2012 elections.

"There were questions linked to the Russian elections -- what the situation was, what should be expected and with who, and would those policies that have been carried out in recent years be continued, in particular the creation of Skolkovo and the Moscow financial center," Dvorkovich said.

"The president said that he would … move into the government and would carry on these things and there was in no way any plan to disrupt this process. We intend to realize them completely, in cooperation with those companies that were here today."

Skolkovo, announced by Medvedev in March 2010, is envisioned as a high-tech hub in the Moscow area.

Heads of companies including Google, Johnson & Johnson, PricewaterhouseCoopers and Russian energy giant Gazprom attended the APEC summit.

Medvedev was to meet later Saturday with U.S. President Barack Obama to discuss missile defense.

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