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Putin Calls For 10-Year Research Initiative

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin is urging a 10-year program to increase investment in science and technological research in Russia.

The call appears in an article published on January 30 in the business daily "Vedomosti."

It is the third recent article presenting Putin's platform ahead of the March 4 presidential election.

In the article, Putin calls for state financing of basic research to be increased severalfold by 2018 to 25 billion rubles ($823 million).

Putin also says Russia's investment climate is "unsatisfactory," citing "systemic corruption" as a key reason.

He writes that reforms begun under outgoing President Dmitry Medvedev have not made "noticeable progress."

Hinting at major changes if, as widely expected, he returns to the Kremlin as president, Putin wrote: "We must change the state itself, the executive and judicial branches."

Compiled from agency reports