'Reform of the Russian army and national law-enforcement are priorities for government budget expenditure over 2003', announced Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov on Thursday at a government meeting. The Department of Government Information announced that supporting national science and education as well as public health and culture are also of primary importance.
He went on to say that the Russian government has already looked into the priorities for socio-economic policy over the coming year. Their main goal is to lower the level of inflation by 10 - 12% over 2003, to carry out tax reforms, and to create a balance in the budget on all levels. He also mentioned the national census planned for October next year, on whose results 'future socio-economic policy depends to a large extent'.
Kasyanov considers it essential to pay close attention to the census, which he considers to be an 'extremely important event' for the country.
Russia has left the list of 33 largest holders of US government bonds, after the country disposed of at least a third of remaining bonds