Irkutsk
Ulan-Ude

Blagoveshchensk
Chita
Yakutsk

Birobidzhan
Vladivostok
Khabarovsk

Magadan
Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk

Anadyr
Petropavlovsk-
Kamchatsky
Moscow

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"We have achieved stability. Now we must achieve stable development "

"We have achieved stability. Now we must achieve stable development "

Vladimir Ilyukhin, Governor of the Kamchatka Territory, tells about priorities of the regional authorities and prospects of the region's investment development in an interview with EastRussia.

- Vladimir Ivanovich, you have been in the governor's post for more than three years. What program of action did you come up with, what did you manage and what did not manage to do during this time?

- Before I was appointed governor, I worked for almost three years as the chief federal inspector and understood that the situation in the province is very tense. There were many difficult (and even complicated) relations in the government bodies, there was no dialogue with the population that we managed to achieve now. Although in the province very much was done: Kamchatka was strengthened financially, after the unification of the region with the district, a single legal field was formed.

The main thing that we managed to do in the past time is to stabilize the situation. We managed to establish a dialogue with the population, with business, with power structures. Today we have excellent relations with the legislature, with municipal authorities, we find support in the Government of the Russian Federation, in the Federation Council, in the State Duma. We cooperate constructively with the Ministry for the Development of the Far East, with the plenipotentiary.

Speaking about economic aspects, we managed to create stability conditions for business. The fact that this happened is evidenced by those investments that were sent primarily to the fishing industry complex, to shore processing - according to different data this is from 8 to 13 billion rubles. In this regard, the dialogue with our processing complex is also indicative: the food industry is developing, a network of Kamchatka producers' fairs is being created, and shops of fish manufacturers are opening, which sell goods at cost.

This is a very good foundation for the development of the social sphere. New housing is being built, and along with it - kindergartens and schools. People have the confidence that tomorrow there will not be any collapse, that they can safely raise their children. By the way, the Minister of Education of Russia, Dmitry Livanov, who recently literally visited Kamchatka, noted that the level of education here is average in Russia or even slightly higher. The region is getting stronger, although we have a lot of problems that we have to deal with every day.

As a governor, this state of affairs pleases me, because for a long time in Kamchatka such positive stable relations have not existed.

- Today the leadership of the country says a lot about the development of the Far East. How much is this attention felt? How much can you pin hopes on the TOP?

- We can implement all serious projects only with the help of the federal center. A lot of things are already in the works. For example, thanks to the state program, today we are building an earthquake-proof housing on the basis of co-financing from the federal budget.

Without development it is impossible to live. Therefore, any positive movements for us are very important. The money that the state somehow puts into programs for the development and support of the Far East will enable regions to develop rapidly. Today we are working on the concept of TOP. Of course, this is a great help for our development: new jobs, the tax base and even the new look of entire sectors of the economy.

For us, as for the territory of the remote, not having automobile and railway communication with the Big land, the development of shipping and port facilities is very promising. Especially since our pier farm needs large capital investments in order to meet the requirements of today. We are talking about turning Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky into a port hub on the route of the Northern Sea Route, about bunkering of passing ships, about transshipment of goods that go to the countries of the Asia-Pacific region. We have a lot of positions here that coincide with the position of the Ministry of Transport of Russia. I believe that there is a good growth point for us.

Another promising area is the whole complex of projects related to the development of aquaculture, extraction and processing of marine biological resources. We want to build fish-breeding factories that would help restore the necessary volume of aquatic biological resources so that Kamchatka remains the "fish table" of our country.

Also important are the issues of alternative energy. For a territory like Kamchatka, these things are very important. Even in the Soviet years, it was a question of building a hydrogeneration on the peninsula. In the 1990-ies was built Tolmachevskaya HPP, but today this is clearly not enough. Therefore, together with the Russian Ministry of Energy and RusHydro, we are working to start designing and building a cascade of Zhupanov Hydroelectric Power Station, which will remove the problem of generating electricity in the central power unit. And this will entail the development of industry, the development of port facilities, production. Alternative energy, by the way, is also the development of wind turbine generation in isolated settlements, an extremely promising direction that is characterized by economic efficiency.

Looking at these three areas, which we can start implementing in the coming years, we are confident that we will be able to develop normally and withdraw from those subsidies that Russia invests in our budget. We ourselves will be able to earn money so that the territory can develop systematically.

- In one of the public statements, you compared Kamchatka with an untilled field. Perhaps, this explains the investors' interest in the region? After all, many want to come first.

- Of course, it is better to come now than in two years. But at the same time there are things for which the time has not come yet. Why did we get the first gold in the gold sector only 10 years after the license was issued? Because platforms, transport corridors should be prepared, specialists should appear who are able to carry out these works. Since Soviet times, we are talking about the construction of a tidal power station in the Penzhinskaya Bay. There is the highest natural potential there, and perhaps in 10 – 15 years, and maybe already in the XXII century, this project will be attractive for investors. In any case, Kamchatka is interesting today. We have a lot of unknown, new for investors. It all depends on how ready the investor himself is to perceive these opportunities of Kamchatka in order to put them at his service.

- What projects are needed for the region "here and now"? On what, in your opinion, it is necessary to make an emphasis, but on what, on the contrary, to refuse?

- We need to focus on infrastructure solutions and industrial projects in the field of fisheries and mining.

So, Kamchatka today is the fish table of the country. Of course, we will develop this sector. We have built a powerful coastal processing. Now we need to do everything so that these facilities do not work 3 – 4 for the month of the year, but at least half a year, so that they allow our shore to develop. Moreover, these plants are able to work all year round, if they are supplied with raw material. But we cannot do this, because part of the catch is overloaded into the sea and leaves, bypassing Kamchatka. To talk about the full development, we need to make changes to the current legislation governing relations in coastal fisheries. So we can put our fish on the beach. And in order to sell products, we still need to resolve the issues of transporting fish to the central regions of Russia. There should be a tariff that would allow us to deliver fish to the center of the country at a normal price by rail or the Northern Sea Route so that the fisherman has his own profit.

Everything related to the mining industry ... Central Kamchatka is waiting for investors who are ready to invest today in the development of its reserves. In addition to what we have on land, we are also talking about the possibility of producing hydrocarbons on the shelf of the peninsula both in the west, in the Sea of ​​Okhotsk, and in the east.

- What horizons do you see for the extraction and production of gold in Kamchatka?

- Today this sector is developing steadily. There was a period when the work was not very fast moving, for example, when the time from obtaining a license before the work began was 10-15, or even 19 years. Today - other realities. I believe that next year we will have a mine in the Ametistovoe field, several deposits will be developed in Central Kamchatka. The South, I hope, will not let us down either, I mean the Asachinskoye deposit. Further in the future, we have the Ozernovskoye field in the north of Kamchatka. In accordance with our calculations, somewhere to 2020-2025 year, we will enter the production of 10-12 tons of gold per year. For us, these are very good indicators.

At the same time, we understand that Kamchatka is a unique region of untouched nature, and everything related to mining should take into account all necessary environmental measures.

- Do you intend to develop the mining industry with the help of investors? How is their selection?

- This is a rather complicated process, a set of indicators. First, it is the desire of the investor to enter. Secondly, its financial, economic and production capabilities. Today we are creating all the conditions for an investor to come to us. Yes, we are a risky zone due to the difficult climatic conditions, complex logistics, but at the same time we have positive examples when a business comes and actively works here. We are ready, together with the business, to work on the problems that confront it so that the business develops our territory, that new jobs are created, that taxes are paid. And they are ready in their own strength and in the legal field to give preferences to investors.

- How strong is small and medium business in Kamchatka now? Was there a dialogue between the authorities and entrepreneurs?

- Small and medium-sized businesses are represented in all sectors of the economy - the fishing industry, trade, construction, transport, agriculture, services, etc. 30% of the working-age population of Kamchatka are engaged in small and medium-sized businesses. We are interested in making this business happen, because it forms the basis of the middle class. At the same time, we primarily engage in dialogue with those who produce, because these are jobs and taxes. We have many programs to support small and medium-sized businesses, and they are effective. For example, we restored the food industry. Today our commodity producer quite actively competes in the market with imported products. Up to 40% confectionery, dairy products - this is our products, from local raw materials.

Today we are subsidizing the electricity producer, the interest rate on the loan, we provide subsidies for modernization, there are a number of other preferences. I believe that we should continue to increase support programs, while it is important that the dialogue on this platform is established.

- What about the state-private partnership? What needs to be changed at the legislative level?

- Unfortunately, today the current legislation does not allow to fully implement projects on the terms of the PMU. We have adopted a law on the PMU, but gaps in legislation at the federal level do not allow this mechanism to be used. Today, a private partner selected on a competitive basis (for example, during the construction of a kindergarten), must participate in accordance with land legislation in bidding for the right to lease a land plot. And there is no guarantee that he will win. So far, everything is based on some agreements, an honest word from the authorities, but business also wants some clear rules, but we cannot provide them today. This hinders the development of territories. For example, a business is ready to invest in the construction of hatcheries, but the law does not give it the right to take full advantage of the products of its labor. If an investor grows fry, he will go to the ocean, and when he returns, everyone who wants can catch it. We are here to protect the business, creating the conditions so that he can legally get what he produced. And this concerns not only aquatic biological resources. PPP should be clear, real, so that the provision of this legislation can be used for the benefit of business and society.

- Vladimir Ivanovich, you were a supporter of enlargement of the region, association of the Koryak Autonomous Okrug and the Kamchatka Region. In your opinion, did you manage to improve at least a little life in the North?

"Every year we put a very large amount of money into the development of Koryakia. Of course, life in the North leaves much to be desired, but it is impossible to restore what 2-3 has lost for decades. And a lot already can not be restored, it is necessary to build a new one.

Of course, the investment component in the North is not as great as in the South, but we always try not to let people feel their distance. For example, in the villages of Guy and Oaklan, where people live on 80, a cellular connection appeared. This year there has been a flood in some areas, but people feel our help: all the necessary repairs are being carried out there on time. And in the Karaginsky district we this summer tried on the technology of building pre-fabricated standard complexes for sports and cultural events. If the operating experience is positive, we intend to replicate this project in other localities.

It is also important for me that in addition to construction and repair, we have provided transport accessibility for people. We subsidize air transportation within the region, although it is very expensive for the budget. But we are going to this, because people should be able to fly to relatives, friends, on leave. The volume of flights grew several times, because the flight was affordable. Of course, now we need to update the airport economy, build strips with a hard surface, buy planes, which we do based on our capabilities.

- Koryakia, and the whole of Kamchatka, used to be associated with constant problems in the heating season. How did you manage to unravel this most complicated tangle of problems?

- In the North have already forgotten that such lack of fuel, bread, system outages with electricity. Moreover, for the first time in 20 years, by the middle of summer, we had brought all necessary fuel to the North. We've never had this. We generally increase every year investments in housing and communal services, in the network economy, where money was not invested in 30-40 years. Sometimes it is necessary to restore the infrastructure from scratch, but it must be done. Such investments in infrastructure, which we are now implementing, have not been since Soviet times. And the past two "wintering" showed that this is already bringing the result: we had practically no accidents connected with the network economy.

- You travel a lot, meet with the population. What do people often ask about, what worries them?

- They ask about the most different things. But the theme of "worries" has changed. If you remember 2011 year, the questions were heavy, tense, up to survival issues: lack of the necessary minimum, inability to get out anywhere, because everything is very expensive. I remember unfrozen Manila when people walked with buckets to boiler rooms and collected coal dust, because there was nothing to sink. Now rhetoric is changing. People are already beginning to think about development. Who would have thought that asphalt would appear in Esso, Anavgai or Ust-Kamchatsk? Such kind of programs cause people positive, confident. And the meetings are constructive.

- Vladimir Ivanovich, you already stated that you will go to the polls. With what will you go, with what program and what will not you promise to voters?

“I try to promise very little, and I have very few unfulfilled promises.” I always remember the film “Chairman” when Ulyanov’s hero was chosen, and he says: “All our joint work is in your barns”. All that we have done is on the streets, on the roads, on the sidewalks, in the houses. Someone will say: “Not enough!” Someone will say: “Normally”. Someone say nothing. But any of these comments is very important to me, because there is always something to strive for. I would like us - the authorities and the population - to understand each other. After all, the less empty emotions and fairy tales there are, the better it will be for all of us. It is with such thoughts that I will go to the polls, and let the people - Kamchatka people - determine whether I deserve an extension of the mandate of trust or not. Time will tell. 

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