The government of Russia has taken a decision to form an organising committee for holding a Year of Russian Culture in Germany in 2003. Russian Minister of Culture Mikhail Shvydkoi and Minister of the Press Mikhail Lesin have been appointed co-chairmen of this committee.
On the government instructions, they have to form within a month an organising committee and approve of the programme for preparing and holding a Year of Russian Culture in Germany. The money for the event will be allocated from the Russian federal budget.
The choice of the city of Helsinki is not incidental as the capital of Finland had hosted US-Soviet negotiations on the limitation of nuclear stockpiles in 1969