Putin was born in Leningrad on October 7, 1952.
In 1975, he graduated with a degree in law from Leningrad
State University. He later completed a doctoral thesis in economics.
After graduation, Mr. Putin was assigned to work in the KGB.
From 1985 to 1990, he worked in East Germany.
In 1990, he became assistant to the rector of Leningrad State
University and was responsible for international affairs.
He then became an advisor to the chairman of the Leningrad
City Council. In June 1991, he became chairman of the St.
Petersburg City Council's International Relations Committee
and, beginning in 1994, he combined this post with the position
of First Deputy Chairman of the St. Petersburg City Government
(First Deputy Mayor).
In August 1996, he was named deputy head of the President's
Property Management Directorate. In March 1997, he became
deputy head of the Presidential Administration and head of
the Central Supervision and Inspections Directorate. In May
1998, he was named first deputy head of the Presidential Administration.
In July 1998, he was appointed director of the Federal Security
Service and, as of March 1999, he combined this post with
that of Secretary of the Security Council.
In August 1999, Mr. Putin was named Prime Minister.
On December 31, 1999, he became acting President.
On March 26, 2000, he was elected President of Russia and
inaugurated on May 7, 2000.
Mr. Putin was reelected for his second term on March 14, 2004 and inaugurated on May 7, 2004.
The Russian Federation is the newest member of the Group of Eight. The Russian Federation began attending the political sessions of the Summit in 1994 at Naples and in all sessions at the Birmingham Summit in 1998. The Russian Federation will host their first G8 Summit in 2006.
The President of the Russian Federation is His Excellency Vladimir Putin. President Putin was first elected President of the Russian Federation in 2000 and re-elected in 2004.
Name: The Russian Federation
Area: 17 million sq. km. (6.5 million sq. mi.); about
1.8 times the size of the United States.
Cities: Capital--Moscow (pop. 8.3 million). Other cities--St.
Petersburg (4.6 million), Novosibirsk (1.4 million),
Nizhniy Novgorod (1.3 million).
Terrain: Broad plain with low hills west of Urals; vast
coniferous forest and tundra in Siberia; uplands and
mountains (Caucasus range) along southern borders.
Climate: Northern continental, from subarctic to subtropical.
Nationality: Noun and adjective--Russian(s).
Population (2002 est.): 145 million.
Annual growth rate (2001 est.): -0.35%.
Ethnic groups: Russian 81%, Tatar 4%, Ukrainian 3%,
Religion: Russian Orthodox, Islam, Judaism, Roman Catholicism,
Protestant, Buddhist, other.
Language: Russian (official); more than 140 other languages
Education (total pop.): Literacy--98%.
Health: Life expectancy (2001 est.)--62 yrs. men, 73
Work force (85 million): Production and economic services--84%;
Independence: August 24, 1991.
Constitution: December 12, 1993.
Branches: Executive--president, prime minister (chairman
of the government). Legislative--Federal Assembly (Federation
Council, State Duma). Judicial--Constitutional Court,
Supreme Court, Supreme Court of Arbitration, Office
of Procurator General.
Political parties: Shifting. The 1999 elections were
contested by Conservative Movement of Russia, Russian
All-Peoples Union, Women of Russia, Stalin Bloc-For
the U.S.S.R., Yabloko, Working Russia, Peace-Labor-May,
Bloc of Nikolayev and Federov, Spiritual Heritage, Congress
of Russian Communities, Peace and Unity Party, Party
for the Protection of Women, Unity Interregional Movement,
Social Democrats, Movement in Support of the Army, Zhirinovskiy's
Bloc, For Civic Dignity, Fatherland-All Russia, Communist
Party, Russian Cause, All-Russian Political Party of
the People, Union of Right Forces, Our Home is Russia,
Socialist Party of Russia, Party of Pensioners and the
Russian Socialist Party.
Subdivisions: 21 autonomous republics and 68 autonomous
territories and regions.
Suffrage: Universal at 18 years.
GDP: $287.7 billion (purchasing power parity estimated
at $1.27 trillion in 2002).
Growth rate (2002): 4.3%.
Per capita GDP: $2,320 (purchasing power parity estimated
at $8,800 in 2002).
Natural resources: Petroleum, natural gas, timber, furs,
precious and nonferrous metals.
Agriculture: Products--Grain, sugarbeets, sunflower seeds,
meat, dairy products.
Industry: Types--Complete range of manufactures: automobiles,
trucks, trains, agricultural equipment, advanced aircraft,
aerospace, machine and equipment products; mining and
extractive industry; medical and scientific instruments;
Trade (2002): Exports (f.o.b.)--$107.2 2 billion: petroleum
and petroleum products, natural gas, woods and wood products,
metals, chemicals. Major markets--EU, NIS, China, Japan.
Imports (f.o.b.)--$60.96 billion: machinery and equipment,
chemicals, consumer goods, medicines, meat, sugar, semi-finished
metal products. Major partners--EU, U.S., NIS, Japan,
China. U.S. exports (f.a.s)--$2.40 billion. Principal
U.S. exports (2002)--oil/gas equipment, poultry, inorganic
chemicals, tobacco, aircraft, medical equipment, autos/parts.
U.S. imports (customs value)--$6.82 billion. Principal
U.S. imports (2002)--oil, aluminum, chemicals, platinum,
iron/steel, fish and crustaceans, knit apparel, nickel,
nickel, wood, and copper.