Tatarstan president to be renamed by summer 2022

“We spoke the same language”

Tatarstan State Council Chairman Farid Mukhametshin talked about the quality of laws adopted by Tatarstan Parliament in 2021, the “formula of success” of the republic’s representatives in the Russian Parliament and plans for improving local governments at a traditional meeting with journalists at the end of the year on 29 December.

“Our priorities are unchangeable, it is the development of the republic and well-being of the population,” Farid Mukhametshin stressed. “94 laws have been adopted and signed this year. This year, we have prevented a precedent in which we adopted a law the president didn’t manage to sign and sent it back to the State Council for reconsideration. This means a lot. On the one hand, it is the professionalism, on the other hand, it is the joint work of power branches in the Republic of Tatarstan... We spoke the same language.”

“Some revival of the economy has already started”

The speaker of the republican parliament highlighted the job done to support entrepreneurship. The tax concessions introduced for small and mid-sized businesses operating at industrial parks in 2021, according to him, are designed to raise their attractiveness for business, an influx of investments in production and the creation of new jobs.

“Entrepreneurs will feel its effect early next year when they will start filling in tax declarations,” he said.

Mukhametshin added that the law on patent system for entrepreneurs favoured a rise in the share of workers using this form of taxation. Their number in the republic rose from 3,600 in 2020 to 22,500 in 2022.

Also, he noted that during the pandemic there were taken all measures to minimise its influence on the development of the economy:

“Some revival of the economy has already started, in the last quarter of the year. Some indicators have notably improved compared to the outlook.”

The pandemic unites people

Farid Mukhametshin said that the budget’s income rose by 84,8 billion rubles in 2021 — this is what Tatarstan earned itself and received from the federal budget. Mukhametshin took advantage of the occasion to thank the government of the Russian Federation for “the huge support amid the coronavirus pandemic”:

“We received huge money, free medication, vaccines...”

And he regretted that “people realise the necessity of vaccination slowly...”

It was separately said that the fight against coronavirus revealed the best human values in Tatarstan residents:

“We saw people unite and try to help each other.”

“Parliament is a place for discussions!”

“We have never said what was let slip at federal level that Parliament isn’t a place for discussions,” Farid Mukhametshin noted talking about the work of deputies, different factions on laws. “Parliament is a place for discussions! To look for correct and necessary decisions for the republic’s life today, tomorrow and in the remote future.”

Farid Mukhametshin called the work of expert councils in State Council committees as novelty of the Tatarstan State Council:

“We managed to push this issue forward... They seriously enrich parliamentary activity. We ensured that they hold meetings of committees on drafts adopted in the State Council on their own. They make these laws a reality. We will keep improving their activity.”

After reminding the audience that the republic was currently represented by 14 United Russia deputies and one Communist in Russian Parliament, Artyom Prokofyev, chairman of the State Council said:

“We managed to save the united representation of Tatarstan in the State Duma. The form of work found in Tatarstan became an example for many Russian regions. We create task forces including a State Duma deputy, a State Council deputy, a representative of a related ministry of agency to promote our initiatives in the federal Duma, to protect interests of the Republic of Tatarstan and tell our truth from the lectern of the State Duma...”

“There is time for regions to change legislation”

Answering journalists’ questions, Farid Mukhametshin said that in 2022 the State Council planned to make changes to the Tatarstan Constitution regarding local governments. And this package will contain “the rule for the top official of the Russian region,” that’s to say, renaming the republican president’s post.

The law on regional authorities, according to which regions cannot have presidents, was signed by Russian President Vladimir Putin in late December. Nowadays Tatarstan is the only region in the country where the regional leader is named this way.

“I cannot name specific terms [when the changes will be made],” said Mukhametshin. “We will do this in June or May, I cannot say, just next year.”

He talked about the upcoming change in the system of local governments in detail:

“Tatarstan was the only region of the Russian Federation that didn’t support the bill in this edition (Editor’s note: first edition). But we approved it at the first hearing, with some amendments we made. With the help of discussions, invitation of Tatarstan deputies, work with the government of the Russian Federation, we manage to have some amendments to be made. It seemed to us that the deputies of the local government were oppressed somehow. But the key moment was that the two-level local government level was probably gradually exhausted itself. And there is parliamentary vertical in some Western countries, democratic countries, and the speed, responsibility rises this way.”

The adoption of the law, the speaker of the republican parliament stated, will require changing regional legislation:

“Now a new task force is created, it will be intergovernmental, with representatives of all power branches, and we will try to find solutions within this law that will enable us to not to reduce the interaction and cooperation between the republic’s parliament with municipalities.”

He voiced the details of upcoming changes: the union between small territories and a reduction in the number of deputies in local councils. And he added:

“About a hundred different laws, not only on local government, will change. But this doesn’t mean that the law will come into force from 1 January, there is time for regions to adopt their laws.”

Tatarstan will create an intergovernmental taskforce with deputies, representatives of executive power and municipal authorities to change the legislation of local governments. State Council Chairman Marat Akhmerov will chair it. It will be created after New Year.

Inna Serova. Photo: