13:38 GMT +321 October 2017
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    RUSSIA RESHUFFLES CABINET FOR TECHNOLOGICAL BREAKTHROUGH: PREMIER

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    MOSCOW, APRIL 2, RIA NOVOSTI - A sweeping government reform now underway in Russia aims to promote an economic breakthrough on a high-tech basis. That will be the focus of all national efforts, Prime Minister Mikhail Fradkov said to a media audience in Moscow.

    The number of deputy ministers has been cut to two for each ministry. That is far more than a personnel reduction-it spells the end of the previous administrative system, he pointed out.

    Russia will, from now on, concertedly work for a technological breakthrough. Deputy ministers are to turn into administrative functionaries who will formulate technical assignments and basic aspects of economic policies for central offices and economic branches. To make Russia's national economy more competitive is primary objective. To reach it, ministries have to abolish a huge number of their mediator offices. Simple and smooth administrative patterns from top to bottom is what the country needs.

    "I am ready to shoulder the responsibility. Though the administrative reform is not my own brainchild, I can implement it-and I am taking the task upon myself," Mr. Fradkov said with resolution.

    He received practical experience of breaking established administrative patterns while he was fiscal police chief. "I was starting with a dozen deputies. I fired all but two plus a head manager. The administrative pattern changed, other indices came to the fore-and so we came to a fairly good effect," the Premier remarked in a contented retrospect.

    "We shall be a success if we help ministries to get rid of redundant duties, and pose them explicit practical tasks, with every economic branch having a clear technical mission, with basic objectives of economic policies underlying each," said Mikhail Fradkov.

    "I am ready to tell every minister what he is to do," he added.

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