Bloomberg names candidates to replace PM Medvedev after presidential election

Bloomberg names candidates to replace PM Medvedev after presidential election
Dmitry Medvedev

The agency’s sources report on the hidden fight for the position of a new Head of Government. Bloomberg notes that the choice of the prime minister can indicate the choice of Putin's successor.⁠

After winning the presidential election in 2018, Vladimir Putin (whose participation in the election has not been announced yet — RBC) will have to dissolve the government and offer the parliament a new candidate for the post of Prime Minister. The choice made by the president will indicate the person who, he believes, should subsequently become his successor, according to Bloomberg.

According to the agency’s sources in Putin’s inner circle, the approaching elections have provoked a certain excitement among lobbyists advocating the replacement of the current head of government, Dmitry Medvedev, with a stronger manager, who will be able to “breathe new life into the country’s moribund economy.”

The possible candidates for the post of prime minister include Chairwoman of the Bank of Russia Elvira Nabiullina, Mayor of Moscow Sergey Sobyanin, and Head of the Ministry of Industry and Trade Denis Manturov. According to Bloomberg, prominent representatives of business and their allies in the ruling circles have already began to discuss possible candidates for the presidency with an eye to the elections of 2024.

The situation is complicated by the fact that Putin himself has yet to announce his decision. Throughout the entire 17 years, Bloomberg notes, he has pitted different groups in the authorities – including the siloviki, advocating the so-called economic nationalism, and the supporters of relaxing of state control like Medvedev and his ally, former Head of the Ministry of Economic Development Aleksey Ulyukaev – against each other. 

Bloomberg experts consider the case against Ulyukaev on charges of bribe extortion from Rosneft Head Igor Sechin (the minister was arrested on November 15 in Rosneft’s office, after which Putin dismissed him in connection with the loss of confidence) to be another evidence of political struggle aggravation. At the same time, two Bloomberg sources at once reported that it was Putin who supported or even initiated the record of the conversation between Ulyukaev and Sechin having been read out loud in court, thus making the head of Rosneft extremely unhappy.

“When a conflict between head of a large state company and a key minister is resolved through a decoy-duck operation, and then in court, you know, it indicates a serious crisis,” political analyst Evgeny Minchenko explained to Bloomberg.

In the article by Bloomberg, it is noted that law enforcers are currently in a better position. However, all attention is now being focused on the case of Ulyukaev, since his verdict may be a hint at the further intentions of the president.

RBC has sent requests to the Chairwoman of the Bank of Russia Elvira Nabiullina, Press Secretary of Moscow Mayor Gulnara Penkova, and the press service of the Ministry of Industry and Trade. Dmitry Medvedev's Press Secretary Natalya Timakova could not be reached.

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