2020 Gaidar Forum, day one: Highlights

The first day of the 11th Gaidar Forum included 52 expert sessions featuring speakers from more than 30 countries. The rich and diverse agenda largely correlated with President Vladimir Putin’s annual Address to the Federal Assembly.

On January 15, the participants discussed the new geopolitical contour in Eurasia, the prospects of the EAEU and BRICS, key aspects of implementing priority social projects, business education, the digital economy and monetary policy.

In his morning remarks, Acting Minister of Economic Development Maxim Oreshkin described inflation as “the main sign of an unhealthy economy”: “It is a signal that incentive measures have stopped working. The structure of demand in the economy, the balance between private investment and government spending, and timely response are important. Problems arise when countries do not respond to inflation.”

The successful monetary policy implementation is possible only through an independent Central Bank, Harvard University Professor Kenneth Rogoff said: “Having the Central Bank report to the monetary authorities is a disastrous path. I remember January 2015 in Russia, low oil prices, large foreign currency debts – all factors conducive to a new crisis. Russia reacted in a professional and logical way; the Central Bank coped with the task perfectly.”

JP Morgan Chase International Chairman Jacob Frenkel, who headed the Bank of Israel from 1991 to 2000, said continuity is important in economics: “About 10-12 years ago, a global financial crisis occurred that changed the world and dismantled many old concepts. But one should not throw away old textbooks just because they have entered a new age. Over hundreds of thousands of years, history had taught us so much, and it would be a tragedy to toss it all out just because the world was not ready for a crisis in 2008. We must not lose direction.”

Discussing the development of priority social projects in Russia, President of the Center for Political Technologies Boris Makarenko said the best promo for national projects would be “a success story that can be seen, touched, and felt. Such stories need to be accumulated, because they give national projects a ‘face.’” According to the expert, teachers and doctors could be the best implementers of national projects: “We can make them our allies just by relieving them from their enormous paperwork.”

The forum will continue to work tomorrow, with the key sessions on the program including the plenary discussion What hinders economic growth? (attended by Acting First Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Finance Anton Siluanov, Acting Deputy Prime Minister Tatyana Golikova, Chairman of the Accounts Chamber Alexei Kudrin, Governor of the Central Bank Elvira Nabiullina), Taxes in the Digital World, National Technology Policy and Regional Specifics, and an open dialogue between the Rector of the Presidential Academy Vladimir Mau and President of France in 2007–2012 Nicolas Sarkozy.

 

The Gaidar Forum is held at the Presidential Academy under the auspices of the Government of the Russian Federation. Over 11 years, it has become one of the most respected expert platforms that traditionally determine the vector for public and academic discussion.

11th Gaidar Forum Organizers:

The Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (RANEPA);
The Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy (Gaidar Institute);
The Association of Innovative Regions of Russia (AIRR).

Forum partners:

General partners: Gazprom, Gazprombank. Strategic partners: Coca-Cola, Mastercard, Russian Railways, Pharmstandard group, Johnson & Johnson, Sanofi, Novartis Group, MSD, ACIG Group, EF Education First. Partners: Prosveshcheniye Group, EY, Huawei, RVC, Russian Agricultural Bank.

General information partners: Rossiya 24 TV Chanel, TASS, RBC, Business FM; strategic information partners: Kommersant Publishing House, Interfax, Rossiyskaya Gazeta, Invest Foresight online business magazine, RIA FederalPress; main information partners: Anews.com, Gazeta.ru, Lenta.ru, News.ru, Profile; international partners: RT, Thomson Reuters, Sputnik, EFE, Cision, Pan Pacific Agency; information partners: Snob media project, PRIME economic news agency, RNS, Expert magazine, Parlamentskaya Gazeta, Polit.ru, Radio Ekho Moskvy, PRO Business TV channel, FINAM.RU agency, Davydov.Index, Strategia magazine, Ekonomika i Zhizn newspaper, ECONS.ONLINE website, Gosudarstvennaya Sluzhba magazine, TV BRICS.