In last week’s session in the State Border Commission, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin ordered less red tape and more efficiency on the country’s state borders. He also appointed his close ally Sergey Ivanov new deputy head of the commission.
A new Border Agency (Rosgranitsa) was established last year, but has failed to function as planned, newspaper Kommersant reports. New leaders will now be appointed in the agency, which is intended to become a main coordinating body for border-related issues. In last week’s border commission session, Mr. Putin also confirmed that a special working group on technical and organisational border issues will be established in the government structures as a means to assist the Border Commission. -All of this, I hope, will help us more efficiently resolve the problems of inter-ministerial relations […] and get rid of excessive bureaucratic procedures, the PM said. -[…] The number of people and the amounts of goods across the border is growing all the time. At the same time, the queues by the border stations are growing. Parasite structures and private persons are doing business on people’s difficulties. Favourable conditions for corruption are being formed, he added. With the appointment of Sergey Ivanov deputy head of the Border Commission, one of the hardliners in the government structures, gets a new field of responsibility. Not known for his liberal views, Mr. Ivanov in the previous Russian cabinet dealt with the country’s military industrial complex, export control and the Marine Board. From before, the head of the FSB is deputy in the Border Commission. According to Kommersant, Russia is now stepping up funding to border-related issues. While 4,1 billion RUB in 2006 was allocated under the Federal Programme on the State Border (2003-2010), a total of 10,5 billion RUB will be allocated to the programme this year.