Reuters International

Russia's former Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin attends a session of the Moscow Exchange Forum in Moscow, Russia, April 12, 2016. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov

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MOSCOW (Reuters) - President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday he highly valued Russia's liberally-minded former Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin as a member of the presidential expert council on the economy.

"He (Kudrin) is one of our strongest and most useful experts," Putin said in his annual televised phone-in. "We agreed that he will work more actively in the presidential expert council and maybe will be one of the council's deputy heads."

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(Reporting by Alexander Winning and Andrew Osborn; Writing and editing by Jack Stubbs, Dmitry Solovyov, Maria Kiselyova)

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