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16 Jan, 2008 19:50

Medvedev checks housing and education in Siberia

First Deputy Prime Minister, Dmitry Medvedev, has paid a one day visit to one of Russia's key gas and oil centres in the Siberian city of Tyumen. He was there to check how housing and education projects are being implemented, part of a broader attempt to

The government spends hundreds of millions of roubles on these two national projects.

Presidential candidate and the man Vladimir Putin is backing to become his successor, Medevdev, was making sure the building of new homes is in full swing in Tyumen.

He stressed that solving the problem depends on co-operation with regional authorities.
“The federal authorities are doing all they can. But the projects can only be implemented with the combined efforts of the regional administration,” Dmitry Medvedev said.

Russia proclaimed 2008 – The Year of the Family – as the country is struggling to boost its birth rate.

Housing reforms are set to make it easier for young families to find an affordable place to live, but Medvedev said it's not only the future of the young that's important.

“We must make our pensions system better. We must think about what our pensioning system will look like in the years to come”, he said.

Medvedev's second destination was one of Tyumen's central universities, the place where oil and gas specialists are being trained.

Dmitry Medvedev is set on working on social issues that are important to the Russian people. And to many, this focus, if kept up, may become a successful basis for Dmitry Medvedev's election campaign.