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Far Eastern exports get support
Director General of the Export Insurance Agency of Russia (EXAMAR) Alexei Tupanov on the opportunities for cooperation with Russian exporters in the Far East
12 March 2015, the office of EXAR opened in the capital of the Far Eastern Federal District of Vladivostok. In this connection, this decision was made?
- The decision was conditioned by a number of objective factors. The first, and most obvious, is the distance between Moscow and Vladivostok. We want to provide the widest possible access to the Agency's insurance support for representatives of various business groups, which is extremely difficult at such a geographic distance. The second factor is the favorable geographical position of the Far Eastern Federal District. The third factor is that 14 territories of advanced economic development will be created in the Far Eastern Federal District (5 in the Primorsky Territory). The specialization of these sites will ensure the production of goods and services that are competitive and, which is extremely important, are in demand in the market of the Asia-Pacific region, with high added value.
It should also be noted the ever-increasing role of the Far East's exports on the scale of Russia. According to the results of the first half of 2015, the Far Eastern region accounted for 6,1% of all-Russian exports against 5,5% a year earlier. The main trading partners for all nine subjects of the Far Eastern Federal District are South Korea, Japan and China. These countries are the main consumers of Far Eastern export goods.
What mechanism of export support of its clients does ECSAR use most often?
- We have two main forms of support for a Russian exporter. First and foremost, financing the exporter or his foreign buyer by Russian or international banks under our guarantee. We call this an insurance contract, but essentially it is a guarantee. The second direction is when we insure our Russian exporter his receivables, that is, we insure him against the risks of non-payment by a foreign buyer.
Any Russian exporter can get support from us if he needs it.
Does EXIAR provide support to exporters - small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs)?
- A separate area of our work is related to the activities of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), which are export-oriented. Our research has shown that, unfortunately, there are not so many of them in Russia so far. We managed, by interviewing many of them, to compose a portrait of the services they need from the state to support the export of their products. The most important request that comes from these companies is, oddly enough, not financial support, but, first of all, the lack of information about potential buyers. We also have developed special solutions for SMEs, first of all, these are products related to the replenishment of working capital.
What has already been done in the short period of operation of the EXIAR Representative Office in the Far East?
- During the first months of the Representation's activity, we have established direct channels of cooperation with most of the subjects of the Far Eastern Federal District: Primorsky, Khabarovsk, Kamchatka Territories, Amur, Magadan Regions, and Yakutia. In the course of the work, seminars were held where they explained the mechanisms for supporting EXIAR, actively discussed aspects of interaction between EXIAR and regional business, and formed plans for joint events taking into account the regional specifics of doing business.
As part of the Eastern Economic Forum on September 4, 2015, an Agreement was signed with the Government of the Khabarovsk Territory. The plan of joint activities of the Agreement provides for an extensive list of tools for interaction with local business - from training seminars to joint implementation of export projects. The first significant step was the signing at the WEF platform of real deals to support export projects of Khabarovsk companies: Amurzerno was supported by grain exports to the Japanese market and Biotex-Agro was supported by the export of peat products to the Republic of Korea. This business represents the small and medium-sized business sector that needs the most help.
In just 9 months of work, the Representative Office received more than 50 requests to support various export projects. There is an active implementation, as I have already noted, of the Agreement with the Government of the Khabarovsk Territory on the joint promotion of mechanisms of state support for exports. 22 practical seminars were held for exporting enterprises with the involvement of representatives of regional authorities and banks in six regions of the Far East. Two regional banks in the Primorsky Territory and Yakutia were accredited for the implementation of programs for joint credit and insurance support for small and medium-sized businesses engaged in foreign economic activity or planning to work on international markets.
In which industries do you see the greatest potential for the development of companies from the FEFD regions, including in terms of export?
- In my opinion, the great potential of the FEFD companies lies, among other things, in the development of joint ventures with foreign companies in the chemical, agricultural, woodworking, and automobile sectors. To support such companies, EXIAR signed appropriate agreements and established a system of joint financing of projects with our partners - agencies similar to EXIAR from other countries: SINOSURE (China), NEXI (Japan), K-SURE (South Korea).
The Russian Agency for Export Credit and Investment Insurance (EXIAR) was established in 2011. The main goal of the Agency's activities is to support high-tech exports by insuring credit and political risks for export credits and insuring Russian investments abroad against political risks. EXIAR operates as part of the Russian Export Center Group, which is the sole shareholder of EXIAR. The authorized capital of the agency is 43,5 billion rubles. The subsidiary of the Agency is the State Specialized Russian Export-Import Bank (Roseximbank).
The total volume of exports supported by EXIAR amounted to approx. US $ 4 billion. In the first nine months of 11 alone, the volume of non-resource exports supported by EXIAR amounted to about 2015 billion US dollars, which is already equal to the indicators of the whole 3,9 and more than 2014% more than in the same period last year.