With much tension looming regarding the U.S. and Russia’s differing views on Syrian military involvement over the G20 meeting, President Vladimir Putin kept early remarks focused solely on global economic issues. While his overall tone could be considered “cautiously optimistic” he went out of his way to take shots at U.S. policy, as expected.
“The US economy is growing, but unfortunately growth rates are lower than what we might have hoped for.”
“Cash handouts cannot go on forever,” Putin said, with President Obama looking on.
“The worlds’ advanced economies are beginning to exit their current stimulus policies which can bring negative consequences. We need to mitigate those unwanted consequences but first of all, our task is to stimulate economic growth and job creation.”
Putin also called for a reform of the IMF in order to broaden its base and strengthen the voice of emerging economies, thereby reducing the power of the United States within the organization.
In light of $70 billion in Russian funds overseas, over $30 billion of which has recently found its way to the British Virgin Islands, Putin has come down hard on tax evasion and off-shoring of capital, even making it illegal for Russian government officials to hold overseas bank accounts.
“We must not become complicit with tax evasion,” said Putin, condemning the unlawful conduct of tax evaders.
“We must prevent processes that lead to outflow of capital,” said Putin.