MOSCOW: Vladimir Putin was sworn in for his fourth term as Russian president on Monday at a lavish ceremony at the Grand Kremlin Palace after winning more than 70 percent of the presidential vote in presidential elections in March.
We asked several Russian political analysts to predict what to expect from his next six years in power.
This will be his most difficult term as president because earlier he was functioning in favorable circumstances. In the 2000s he presided over good economic conditions, he put the oligarchs in their place, people started to live better – of course this had to do with the reforms of the 1990s, but the people saw it as tied to Putin and he rose on this wave. Then he kept himself on the wave from 2008 onward with Georgia, Ukraine, and Crimea – though these were illusory victories.
People thought they had gotten up from their knees and became independent from the United States. We thought that we were stronger and richer. Well, now we’re stronger but still weak.
Our economic growth in the past decade has averaged less than 1 percent per year. How can we solve these issues of economic stagnation, sanctions and no investment? It looks like he’ll have to get [ex-Finance Minister Alexei] Kudrin, but Kudrin won’t be able to do much anyway because his hands are tied with Putin’s politics. The main problem for Putin is the economy. He can’t get anywhere with foreign policy because everyone already knows what to expect from him.