President Vladimir Putin issues decree to reorganize Voice of Russia, RIA Novosti to Rossiya Segodnya news wire
The relevant decree, entitled "On certain measures to raise the operational effectiveness of state-owned mass media" is posted on the presidential website.
In line with the decree, as of the moment of the liquidation of RIA Novosti, the rights of its founder will be transferred to the "Rossiya Segodnya" agency.
Pursuant to the decree, the news agency will manage the property, including foreign property, used by RIA Novosti for reporting Russian government policies and Russian public life abroad.
The "Rossiya Segodnya" news agency will have its headquarters at 4 Zubovsky Boulevard in Moscow.
The core business of "Rossiya Segodnya" will be "the coverage of Russian state policy and public life in the Russian Federation" for foreign audiences, the decree says.
The same decree liquidates the Voice of Russia state-owned broadcasting corporation. Its property will be placed under the management of "Rossiya Segodnya" news agency.
Dmitry Kiselyov was appointed General Director of the new "Rossiya Segodnya" news agency.
The reorganization of the Voice of Russia, RIA Novosti and some other state-run media outlets is aimed at cost-effectiveness and efficiency, Presidential Administration Head Sergei Ivanov told reporters on Monday.
"The decree has two main purposes," he said. The first task is to ensure "the more rational use of budget money allotted to state-run information resources," he said. "This is the question of reducing [the funds needed] rather than their enlargement," he stressed, adding that budget spending in this sphere of activity has already been cut for next year.
The second task "is to improve the efficiency of operations of the state-run media," he said.
"Russia is holding an independent policy and unwaveringly protects its national interests. It is not easy to explain that to the world, but it can and must be done. We have achieved certain successes in this field and, on the other hand, have had some problems. I am confident we can overcome them," Ivanov said.
"We must tell the truth, make it accessible to the most people possible and use modern language and the best available technologies in doing so," said the Kremlin administration head.
As of today, The Voice of Russia radio company has officially ceased to exist in its previous capacity and will merge with several other state-run news agencies to emerge as Rossiya Segodnya, a Russia-based international news service.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a decree abolishing RIA Novosti, one of the largest news agencies in Russia. RIA will be reborn into its second life as a global agency called Rossiya Segodnya (Russia Today).
Rossiya Segodnya will be headed by Dmitry Kiselyov, the Kremlin says. The headquarters of the newly-born agency will stay at the RIA office.
According to the official statement, Rossiya Segodnya will also include the state-run Voice of Russia radio station.
President Putin has also given the Cabinet of Ministers a month to plan all events necessary to help the International News Agency "Rossiya Segodnya" into existence and add it to the list of state-run strategic entities.
The fledgling agency will focus on informing foreign audiences about Russia's policies and the way of life.
The President’s decree today reformed and did away with an entire bulk of state media. It abolished the State Fund of Television and Radio Programs, placing it under control of All-Russia State Television and Radio Broadcasting Company.
The same order has passed over the Russian Book Chamber, a federal scientific center, to the ITAR-TASS news agency.
The decree comes into force from today, December 9.
Voice of Russia,