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What's Happening 20:52 21 Apr 2021

I promise to promise a takeoff and breakthrough: what did Putin say in his address to Russians and what did he not say to Ukrainians

What the President of the Russian Federation said in his annual address to the Federal Assembly, and where Ukraine came up between the lines.

Photo Reuters

In 2012, the idea has surfaced that thanks to Putin's managerial talent, Russia was steadily approaching the standard of living of the "golden billion" and in 10 years, it'd become a legal member of the club of the world's most prosperous countries despite adverse external conditions. The decade is coming to an end, the "golden" goal is just as unattainable, but its realization is still promised almost every year in different variations and by various methods. In 2016, addressing the Federal Assembly, Putin instructed the government to reach a rate of economic growth higher than the world's at the turn of 2019-2020; in 2018, he stressed Russia's enormous achievements and set the primary goal: to increase GDP by one and a half times by the middle of the next decade which would allow it to enter the top five largest economies in the world.

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