MOSCOW, May 7 (RIA Novosti)
Russian President Vladimir Putin has instructed the government to adopt a range of social measures including significant reduction of mortgage loan rates, the Kremlin said on Monday.
Putin bound the government to reduce mortgage loan rates to 2.2 percent by 2018.
He also pushed for state measures to increase real wages 1.4-1.5-fold by 2018. The average lifespan in Russia must reach at least 74 year Putin said in a decree.
The president also instructed the government to set forth measures that will help give new homes to at least sixty percent of those families who want to improve their living conditions.
By the end of June, state scholarships for first-year and second-year students should be increased to the level of minimum living wages, Putin said in a decree. The decree concerns students from poor families and those doing well in studies.
Putin also said that by 2016, pre-school education for children between three and seven years must become free of charge.
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The growing outright rivalry between the United States and China gives Russia more foreign policy weight, enabling it to assume the role of a balancer. So far it has been doing so rather skillfully. Today it may participate in a joint naval exercise with China that Beijing positions as outwardly anti-American. But tomorrow it can team up with the naval forces of the Old World.