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Optimizing optimism

EastRussia sums up Dmitry Medvedev's visit to the Khabarovsk Territory

Optimizing optimism

The Far Eastern governors last Saturday were given a rare opportunity today to discuss all the problems of the regions entrusted to them with a whole team of federal officials led by Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev. Khabarovsk became the first city in his five-day voyage to the countries of the Asia-Pacific region. The list of capitals where the prime minister will visit in the coming week are Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and Bangkok.

Time of difficult decisions

“The difficulties that the economy is facing today should not interfere with our plans for the development of the Far East,” said Dmitry Medvedev, opening the meeting in Khabarovsk. “For these purposes, we are trying more and more actively to focus not only on our internal capabilities, but also on business ties with the countries of the Asia-Pacific region,” the Prime Minister noted, emphasizing the importance of his upcoming trip to the Far East.

In his opinion, the socio-economic situation in the regions requires difficult decisions. “If decisions are not taken in time, then, of course, the consequences of economic problems can be more severe, more significant,” Medvedev said.

The head of government set a cautiously optimistic tone for the upcoming conversation. “In the current situation, the fulfillment of these tasks requires additional concentration of efforts and a number of difficult decisions,” he said about the upcoming creation of territories of advanced development, and about the current indicators of the Far Eastern Federal District, noted that “if we talk about figures, they look good, but we are not must be deceived. "

“No one, except the heads of the regions, knows the situation in the territories where you work, in the backbone enterprises located in the territories of your regions, in the situation on the labor market,” Medvedev said. “It is clear that the situation is different for everyone. Some problems are typical for the Far East, others have local specifics, ”the prime minister said.

With growth against the background of a recession

A report on the sustainable development of the economy and social stability in the regions of the Far Eastern Federal District was made by the Minister of the Russian Federation for the Development of the Far East Alexander Galushka. He noted that, in general, the district’s economy remains stable. In his opinion, the situation in the labor market is indicative in this respect: the official number of unemployed as of 25 in March of this year is 56 thou. 726 people, which is 6% lower than last year. At the same time, the vacancy bank of the employment agencies of the population of the Far Eastern Federal District contains more than 127 thousand vacancies, and the prospective need for labor resources for the 2015 year is almost 50 thousand people.

In all subjects of the Far Eastern Federal District, regional anti-crisis commissions and headquarters headed by governors have been created, anti-crisis plans have been adopted, the situation in monotowns is being monitored, and the financial stability of 290 key system-forming enterprises is monitored. “On average, the regions achieved optimization at the level of 4,2%, which is 28,9 billion rubles,” Galushka said, assessing the work of regional administrations to sequester the costs of all budget recipients.

“For the sake of objectivity, it should be noted that in the Far East, in a number of industries and enterprises, the current economic situation is favorable for development,” the minister stressed. According to him, the change in the ruble exchange rate has formed a favorable economic environment for the coal industry, gold mining, the diamond industry, fisheries, electricity exports and other industries. Some regions recorded an increase in inbound tourism from the Asia-Pacific countries - Japan, China, South Korea.

However, Galushka also voiced some difficult issues, in the solution of which, in his opinion, the federal government should participate. These are, in particular, the refinancing of the budgetary arrears of the regions, the financial recovery of the main producer and supplier of electricity and heat in the Far East - RAO ES East holding, state support and stimulation of the development of the housing construction industry.

Bad debts of good companies

The meeting was unusually large - three! - governors with the prefix "interim". However, the temporary nature of the performance of governor's duties did not prevent them from speaking out on general and eternal topics. Among other things, the heads of the regions took up the topic of debts and opportunities for refinancing, restructuring and even rehabilitation. If Galushka proposed restructuring the debt of RAO ES of the East, exceeding 80 billion rubles, with the help of state banks so that tariffs would not increase in the region, then Kamchatka Governor Vladimir Ilyukhin suggested converting into rubles a large dollar loan from the unprofitable OJSC Geotherm. And almost all the heads of the regions, following the head of the Ministry of Development of the Russian Federation, spoke about the need to expand the practice of refinancing - to replace commercial loans from banks to the regions with cheaper budget loans.

The debt of RAO ES of the East is 83 billion rubles, its servicing in 2015 will cost “18% on average” (that is, 14,94 billion rubles), the minister calculated. And this, he said, "carries with it direct risks of rising electricity tariffs." According to the financial statements of RAO ES Vostoka published in March for 2014 in accordance with IFRS, the company received 2,181 billion rubles of net loss. At the end of last year, she had a long-term debt of 64,4 billion rubles (of which 23,36 billion rubles - to the parent RusHydro, 14,56 billion rubles - to Sberbank, 7,53 billion rubles - to the Bank of Moscow) and short-term for 13,57 billion rubles (including 4,92 billion rubles for VTB, 4 billion rubles for Rosbank, 2,83 billion rubles for Sberbank).

Accounts receivable of the company amounted to 23,1 billion rubles.

A little later, Kamchatka Governor Vladimir Ilyukhin started talking about energy debts. He recalled that under the agreement on lending to the local OJSC Geotherm (99,645% of the company belongs to RusHydro), settlements with the Ministry of Finance are made in dollars, "while the debt, or rather, the loan to the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development has already been paid." “The budgetary loan within the country must be converted into the national currency at the rate that was at the time of this decision,” the governor said (in his presentation it was proposed to do this at the rate of 33,4 rubles per dollar). “Indeed, it is necessary to switch to fixing the debt in rubles due to the fact that this is a rather significant burden on the entire economy of the region,” Evgeny Dod, Chairman of the Board of RusHydro, supported the proposal.

Back in 100, Geotherm OJSC borrowed $ 1 million from the EBRD for the construction of the Mutnovskaya GeoPP-1998. The Kamchatka administration acted as a guarantor, and the Ministry of Finance fulfilled the obligations to repay the loan to the EBRD. In September 2005, the debt was restructured: the debt with the provision of installments until 2035 was transferred to the regional budget, Geotherm, by an additional agreement, undertook to pay these funds to the Kamchatka budget in full. But last fall, the dollar rose sharply again. According to the balance sheet data for 2014 according to RAS, JSC Geotherm with revenues of 864,5 million rubles showed a net loss of 2,069 billion rubles at the end of the year, the company's long-term liabilities at the end of last year exceeded 5,8 billion rubles.

The governor of Kolyma spoke about another bad debt: the head of the Magadan region, Vladimir Pechenyi, recalled the "gold" loan allocated to the region in the mid-1990s with precious metals and stones, which must be returned in dollars. In 2013, when the region owed $ 30,1 million, in rubles it was 655,7 million.By 2015, the debt in foreign currency decreased threefold - to $ 10 million, but because of the doubled exchange rate, it is still 619,8. XNUMX million rubles, and they have to be paid before the end of the year.

Gas and possible failure

The Khabarovsk Territory also had to face problems caused by fluctuations and jumps in exchange rates - here gas prices from the Sakhalin-1 project increased in price, which the region requires almost 2,5 billion cubic meters a year. m. Governor of the region Vyacheslav Shport appealed to the Prime Minister with a request to support the region's position in negotiations with Exxon Neftegas Ltd (operator of the Sakhalin-1 project).

“The region has lost income due to the pegging of the gas price to the dollar and yen rates. There the issue price will probably be somewhere around 3 billion. We have suggestions on how to resolve this issue, ”said Vyacheslav Shport and named two ways to solve the price problem: refusal from gas from Sakhalin-1 or settlement of the price issue with gas suppliers on the terms of the region. “Let them make further concessions to us so that we can continue to work with them. We have real proposals, which we have already made. I ask you to support them so that they are considered faster, because this is connected with tariffs for the population, ”Shport addressed Medvedev.

Meanwhile, the region does not yet have the opportunity to switch to natural gas supplies from Gazprom, they were previously announced for 2013, but this did not happen, and the first stage of the Power of Siberia gas transmission system, the construction of which Gazprom began in September 2014, will be ready only by the end of 2017. By this time, the Khabarovsk Territory will be able to receive gas within 4 billion cubic meters. m per year.

In March 2015, the regional authorities announced that OJSC Far Eastern Generating Company and OJSC Khabarovskkraigaz managed to agree with Exxon to apply a 30% reduction factor to the difference between the old and new prices. Exxon Neftegas Ltd in October 2014 calculated the tariff based on the dollar exchange rate of 37,1 rubles. As a result of the change in the exchange rate of the ruble to the dollar, the cost of 1 thousand cubic meters. m of gas increased from 5,5 thousand rubles to 8 thousand rubles. At the old prices, DGK and Khabarovskkraigaz had to pay about 7,5 billion rubles for the supplies.

The contract for the supply of gas from Exxon Neftegas Ltd to the Khabarovsk Territory was signed for 2005-2025. Since 2005, according to the operator, more than 14 billion cubic meters of gas have been supplied. Gas is also used in the energy systems of the Sakhalin Region, Kamchatka and Primorsky Krai. The Sakhalin-1 project is being implemented on the basis of a production sharing agreement. In addition to Exxon, shares in it are owned by Japanese Sodeco (30%), as well as Rosneft and Indian ONGC (20% each). Exxon Neftegas previously reported that it "is committed to fulfilling its obligations under the gas sales contracts."

Reforge Mechel and sanitize TikhVTB

The head of Yakutia, Yegor Borisov, opposed the reduction of funds for projects under the federal target program "Social and Economic Development of the Far East and the Baikal Region." "Federal target programs have been cut by 10%, the program for the Far East and the Baikal region by 41%," Borisov told Interfax-Far East.

The Yakutsk governor noted that new facilities that were included in the program were cut. “I consider it incorrect to shoot these objects. The Far Eastern program must remain the same as it was adopted, ”the head of the region stressed. According to him, of the 18 billion rubles that were cut, 10 billion rubles are for projects in Yakutia and relate to the construction of new airports in the region.

Meanwhile, part of Yegor Borisov's fears were dispelled by State Duma deputy Irina Yarovaya, who reported that the United Russia faction in the State Duma proposes, when revising amendments to the federal budget, to restore the volume of financing of the federal target program for the development of the Far East to more than 3,1 billion rubles, as well as to allocate additional 2,2 billion rubles to support timber processing enterprises in the region. “We propose to return the amount of 3 billion 175 million rubles to the second reading of the draft amendments to the budget,” the parliamentarian told reporters.

Yegor Borisov hopes that the federal leadership will support Mechel's debt restructuring. “For us, Mechel is a city-forming enterprise; they own the Yakutugol company in the south of the republic and the Elginskoye field. I recently met with the head of Mechel, Igor Zyuzin, and we agreed that we would assist in solving problems, first of all, with the restructuring of debts, ”Borisov said. “Mechel today has the opportunity to restore its production, and of course, it is necessary to take specific measures to ensure that this production is already being established,” he added.

At the end of the meeting, Deputy Prime Minister and Plenipotentiary of the Russian President in the Far Eastern Federal District Yuri Trutnev told reporters that it was premature to support Mechel, which found itself in a difficult financial situation, at the expense of state support, the company must deal with its debts. “When an enterprise is with banks in a state close to lawsuits, it is absolutely impossible to include it in the list of those supported at the expense of the state budget. First, they must improve the situation at the enterprise, "said Yuri Trutnev, recalling that" the enterprise's creditors are disposed to improve it. "

Oleg Kozhemyako, acting governor of the Sakhalin region, on the contrary, asked to simplify the procedures for obtaining loans for small and medium-sized businesses that cannot be obtained in preparation for the next salmon patina. Kozhemyako in his speech suggested sanitizing the Pacific Vneshtorgbank, but at the same time preserving its branch network and deposits of the population.

And the bridge is still there

Another interim, this time the governor of the Jewish Autonomous Region, Alexander Levintal, told the prime minister why the construction of the first and so far the only bridge across the Amur to China cannot be started. “The Chinese side is actively building a cross-border railway bridge over the Amur River near the village of Nizhneleninskoye, now the main thing is to launch the construction from the Russian side. The problem with the launch of construction arose due to the change of funds that finance it, ”Levintal said. “At first it was the Fund for the Development of the Far East and the Baikal Region, then it was replaced by the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF). Now they need to fully agree on a financing scheme and start construction, ”he said.

According to Levinthal, at the meeting he once again drew attention to the need for the earliest possible start of financing and construction of a bridge on the territory of the Jewish Autonomous Region with the control of the Russian government. “This will allow the region, on the one hand, to get a point of growth, and on the other, to give impetus to a number of other projects tied to the bridge. This kind of construction is a powerful anti-crisis project: hundreds of people will be involved, and budget revenues will begin. As soon as the implementation of the main project starts, others - logistics, industrial parks, agricultural ones - will be launched immediately, ”said the interim head of the region. According to him, the prime minister supported his proposal. The Acting Governor of the Jewish Autonomous Region himself intends to hold talks with the head of RDIF Kirill Dmitriev on his next visit to Moscow.

The construction of a railway bridge 2,2 km in length across the Amur near the village of Nizhneleninskoe in the Jewish Autonomous Region from the Russian side and the city of Tongjiang from the Chinese side began only on the Chinese coast. It was previously announced that construction on the Russian territory will be launched in October 2014.

His investor in 2014 was the Russian-Chinese Investment Fund, established by the Russian Direct Investment Fund and the Chinese investment corporation CIC. According to preliminary estimates, the construction will require more than 10 billion rubles. The project implementation will create more than 3 thousand new jobs.

The final agreement on the construction of a bridge between Russia and China was reached in June 2013 at the St. Petersburg Economic Forum between First Deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Federation Igor Shuvalov and First Deputy Prime Minister of the State Council of the PRC Zhang Gaoli, and the first agreement on its construction was signed in October 2008 year. At the first stage of the project, the capacity of the bridge crossing will be 5,2 million tons per year, and at the second stage - about 21 million tons of cargo. The length of the bridge is 2,2 km, of which the Russian part is 0,3 km. The bridge is primarily required for export supplies of iron ore concentrate from the Kimkano-Sutar mining and processing plant under construction. The estimated production capacity of the GOK is 8,3 million tons of concentrate per year. According to the initial plans, the construction of the bridge was supposed to be completed in December 2016. On the Chinese territory, the facility will join the Xianyangchuan - Haiu Dao railway line, and on the Russian territory - to the Trans-Siberian Railway.

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