Russia identifies economic backwardness as national security threat

Cash, Calculator, Pen

(Interfax – January 19, 2016)

Russia’s new national security strategy identifies the key threats to the country. The main threats to national security in the economic sphere are the low competitiveness of the Russian economy and its continuing dependence on raw material exports, Sergey Vakhrukov, aide to the secretary of the Russian Security Council, told journalists on 19 January, as reported by privately-owned Russian news agency Interfax.

Main threats in economic sphere

He said that, according to the new strategy, the main strategic threats to national security in the economic sphere include:

– “low competitiveness”;

– “a model of development based of raw material exports and high dependence on external economic conditions”;

– “a lag in development and implementation of advanced technologies”;

– “imbalance in the national budgetary system”;

– “insufficient lending resources”;

– “vulnerability of the national financial system”.

Main goals

According to Vakhrukov, under the new strategy of national security, the main efforts are to be directed towards achieving the following “most important goals”:

– “removing the imbalance in the economy”;

– “reducing the level of inter-regional differentiation in the socioeconomic development of the constituent parts of the Russian Federation”;

– “reducing exposure to external negative factors”;

– “pragmatic participation in international economic cooperation”;

– “increasing the effectiveness of state management in the economic sphere”.

Measures to achieve main goals

These goals are to be achieved by implementing the following measures, Vakhrukov said:

– “developing the industrial and technological base and national innovation system”;

– “modernising and developing priority sectors of the national economy”;

– “increasing the investment attractiveness of the Russian Federation”;

– “upgrading the financial and banking system”;

– “improving the business climate and creating a favourable business environment”.

Strategic goals

Russia’s “strategic goals” include, under the new strategy of national security:

– “economic development”;

– “ensuring economic security”;

– “creating conditions for the development of the individual”;

– “transition of the economy to a new level of technological development”;

– “Russia’s joining the leading countries in terms of GDP”;

– “successfully confronting the influence of internal and external threats”.

Energy security

Vakhrukov said that “ensuring energy security” was a major factor of economic security, which includes:

– “sustainable supply of domestic energy demand”;

– “improving energy efficiency and energy saving”;

– “improving the competitiveness of domestic energy companies and energy producers”;

– “ensuring the stable operation of energy and water supply systems”.

Improving quality of life

“Improving the quality of life” of Russian citisens is regarded as a “strategic national priority”, the Security Council official said. State policy is to be directed towards:

– “reducing the level of social and income inequality”;

– “ensuring food security”;

– “increasing availability of comfortable housing, high-quality and safe products and services, a modern education and health care”;

– “creating hi-tech jobs”.

Food security

“Special attention” in the national security strategy is devoted to measures directed towards ensuring food security. They include:

– “accelerating the development and modernisation of the agro-industrial and fishery sectors, food industry and the domestic market infrastructure”;

– “improving access for agricultural producers to markets for products”;

– “preventing uncontrolled circulation of genetically modified organisms and products derived from the use of such organisms”;

– “improving the system of technical regulation, as well as measures of public health and phytosanitary supervision, and control in the field of food safety for human health”.