"We are not being lectured like schoolchildren, we are respected and we are deferred to. Russia has reclaimed its proper place in the world community. Russia has become a different country, stronger and more prosperous."
First of all, I would like to give my thanks for the offer to participate in the elections for the president of Russia. This offer was given by United Russia, Just Russia, the Agrarian Party and the Civil Force party. I tie this to the necessity of continuing the implementation of the course our country has been moving along for eight years, the course chosen by the people during these years, the course which prevented the collapse of our economy and of the social sphere in our country, the course which prevented civil war, the course which is being conducted by President Putin.
What is so dear for us today? Stability, improvement of the quality of life and the hope for durable and steady development. Education, health care, housing construction -- we have managed to overcome the stagnation of the 1990s in these most important spheres of our life.
First and yet incomplete results have appeared, our economy has strengthened considerably. We do not live in debt any more, but according to our means. The economy is growing at a pace higher than that of many developed countries.
Our defense capacity and security has grown. The attitude toward Russia in the world is different now. We are not being lectured like schoolchildren, we are respected and we are deferred to. Russia has reclaimed its proper place in the world community. Russia has become a different country, stronger and more prosperous.
But even more has to be done: we need to sharply decrease poverty, to create a modern health-care system and education, to solve the most complicated housing problems, to achieve new living standards in rural areas. Our task is to increase the real incomes for all citizens, to ensure a decent life for the elderly, to create necessary conditions for the development of the young. It is necessary to continue reviving industries and agriculture, to secure Russia's role in international relations, and, finally, to solve the gravest demographic problem.
These tasks will remain relevant for decades to come. That is why it is so important to continue the course which was formed at the end of the 1990s.
In order to stay on this path, it is not enough to elect a new president who shares this ideology. It is not less important to maintain the efficiency of the team formed by the incumbent president. That is why I find it extremely important for our country to keep Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin at the most important position in the executive power, at the post of the chairman of the government.
He led the list of the biggest party, United Russia, which won an impressive victory at the elections to the State Duma and only with this composition, will the new legislative and executive power be able to work efficiently.
Expressing preparedness to run for the post of president of Russia, I appeal to him with a request to give a principled consent to head the government of Russia after the election of a new president of our country.