Friday, January 30, 2009

putin's speech at davos

Russian Federation | The current situation is often compared to the Great Depression of the late 1920s and the early 1930s, and it is true that there are some similarities.

However, there are also some basic differences. The crisis has affected everyone in this era of globalisation. Regardless of their political or economic system, all nations have found themselves in the same boat.

There is a certain concept, called the perfect storm, which denotes a situation when Nature's forces converge in one point of the ocean and increase their destructive potential many times over. It appears that the present-day crisis resembles such a perfect storm.

Responsible and knowledgeable economists and politicians must prepare for it. Nevertheless, it always flares up unexpectedly-just like the Russian winter. We always make painstaking preparations for the cold season, yet it always arrives in an unexpected flash. The current situation is no exception, either. Although the crisis was simply hanging in the air, the majority did not want to notice the rising wave.

In the last few months, virtually every speech on this subject started with criticism of the United States. This time, however, I will do nothing of the kind.

I just want to remind you that, just a year ago, American delegates speaking from this rostrum emphasised the U.S. economy's fundamental stability and its cloudless prospects. Today, investment banks, the pride of Wall Street, have virtually ceased to exist. In just 12 months, they have posted losses exceeding the profits they made in the last 25 years-an unprecedented scope! This example alone reflects the real situation better than any criticism.

The time for enlightenment has come. We must calmly, and without gloating, without going into excessive details, assess the root causes of this situation and try to peek into the future.

In our opinion, the crisis was brought about by a combination of several factors.

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