MAKSIM SHEREIKIN: EASTERN ECONOMIC FORUM WILL OPEN NEW OPPORTUNITIES FOR BUSINESS IN THE FAR EAST OF RUSSIA
29 May 2015
Maksim Shereikin, Deputy Minister of the Ministry for Development of Russian Far East, told the participants of the conference “Infrastructure projects in the Far East” about the concept. He stated that the Forum will take place, in accordance with a Presidential decree, from September 3 – September 5 in Vladivostok and will gather representatives from state authorities of Russia and Asia Pacific Region states, major investors, business representatives and industry experts.
According to the Deputy Minister, the program architecture has six subject areas. At the same time, the focus will be on investment and the specifics of business in the created FDTs and in the Free Port Vladivostok.
The first area covers the presentation of investment projects. ‘This is the most important track. We would like to gather qualified experts and important investors into separate economic segments,’ he stated.
The sessions are expected to contain 15-minute closed presentations. ‘Discussion of investment projects will take place without the media as much of the information is a commercial secret. Thus, a working site will be provided for every investor to take a set of projects to consider,’ he said.
According to him, the main pool of projects for presentation at the Forum is being currently formed. He pointed out that the organizers are open to consider all and any projects and add them to the program. However, only projects which are highly prepared for implementation will be presented. ‘The guest experts will help us select the projects based on the information delivery quality and how attractive they might be for investors. To do so, the project initiator must provide accurate data that the investor requires to take a decision. We don’t need fantasies or ideas; what we need is a clear business plan. We want as many investors as possible to come to the Far East and as many projects as possible to develop. We don’t offer general thoughts about geographic position or potential prospects, but certain conditions to fulfill an investment project,’ he stated.
The second area is to create as transparent an investment environment as possible. ‘It is no secret that a lot of projects are blocked because of contradictions or unclear details. Investors talk about bottlenecks that make investments complicated and make business non-transparent,’ said the Deputy Minister. Discussions will be segmented by key industries in the Far East. ‘The best result of such discussions is the elimination of all uncertainties. This will give a start to further beneficial work,’ said Maksim Shereikin. According to him, this area will give the Forum a strategic direction that will improve investment climate as a whole.
The third block is focused on investment conditions in the macro region. ‘We want to describe how to invest, buy, trade and live in the Far East. It will be a presentation of practices and experiences, as well as opinion exchange about everyday life. Investors don’t want just to implement a project. Many of them want to get an idea how their specialists will live, as up to now, the Far East is terra incognita, it is seen by investors as attractive and tempting, but unclear and strange,’ the Deputy Minister said.
The fourth area will be for Russian businesses. Maksim Shereikin said that the future of the Far Eastern regions depends on integration with the fast growing economy of the Asia Pacific Region. ‘The market of the Central part of Russia is arguably ten times farther than that of our neighbors. We want to talk about the economic traditions of the Asia Pacific Region states: what opportunities they give and what threats there are,’ clarified Mr. Shereikin. Foreign and Russian businessmen will share their experience and talk about the specifics of different countries.
The fifth area is divided by country. According to the Deputy Minister, special insurance sessions are expected; ‘There will be separate events for businessmen from Japan, China, South Korea and other partners. This format might take place on the last day of the Forum.’
The sixth block has a diplomatic aspect. ‘We hope that the Forum will have participants of the highest political level. Invitations will be sent in the nearest future,’ said Maksim Shereikin, and pointed out the high interest from foreign partners.