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    Efforts should be made to speed up Russian economic growth-Medvedev

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    The Russian government should make efforts to speed up growth in the country whose economy has expanded 4% in the first five months of 2010, President Dmitry Medvedev said on Friday

    The Russian government should make efforts to speed up growth in the country whose economy has expanded 4% in the first five months of 2010, President Dmitry Medvedev said on Friday.

    He also said that the government would be ready to consider lower taxes for business in several years only if international and domestic economies developed successfully.

    "We started the year with a growth. The growth rate is so far not as inspiring as we want it, but the figures are decent," Medvedev told the St.Petersburg International Economic Forum.

    He also promised the government would consider the possibility to ease the tax burden for companies but only in some years and on condition of a healthy economic situation in Russia and abroad.

    "We shall return to the issue of a tax burden easening for businesses in the next few years if the global and Russian economies recover in favorable conditions. If everything goes to a favorable scheme," Medvedev said.

    However, he said that the capital gains tax for direct investment would be cancelled from the next year.

    But meanwhile the budget needs funds and Medvedev said that he had significantly decreased the number of companies which cannot be privatized.

    "I am cutting the number of strategic companies five times...I have signed a decree to this effect today," he said.

    He also suggested the government set up a joint fund with state and private money to develop strategic projects.

    "I order the government to work on the idea of creating a special investment fund where state money will be augmented with private capital  - say, we expect one ruble of state investment to attract three rubles of private investment. I think the idea should be implemented within a year," he said.

    ST.PETERSBURG, June 18 (RIA Novosti)

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