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Vladimir Pechenyi: "The results must be evaluated not according to the number of signed agreements"

Governor of the Magadan Region Vladimir Pechenyi on the importance for the region of the III Eastern Economic Forum

The third WEF exceeded all expectations by the number of participants, and by the number of agreements signed. Magadan region has presented a number of investment projects in the field of mining, agriculture, tourism, development of transport infrastructure. And the exposition of Kolyma, where the guests of the forum could take up gold nuggets or make a hide of a deer in a Koryak yurt, made a real sensation. Governor of Magadan region Vladimir Pecheny told EastRussia why he does not think that the WEF region successfully managed to solve all the tasks set.

Vladimir Pechenyi: "The results must be evaluated not according to the number of signed agreements"
Photo: Tass / VEF Photobank
- Vladimir Petrovich, everything, you can exhale, the forum is over. How do you evaluate its results?
- After the forum, everyone usually asks: "How many investor contracts did you sign?" But I do not think that the effectiveness of such events should be assessed by the number of agreements signed and the amount of investments attracted. Any forum is just an excuse to sum up the work done before it starts. And the main result of our work is a huge amount of investments, which systematically, from year to year, comes to the Magadan Region. Annually only private investors invest more than 80 billion rubles in the implementation of projects on the territory of our region. And this is only a part of the total investment. These figures demonstrate as clearly as possible: we really succeeded in increasing the investment attractiveness of the Magadan region, creating really favorable conditions for investors.

And the agreements that we signed on the forum ... It is difficult for me to say which of them are the most significant. It is difficult to select one from the general number. Some agreements are absolutely applied for us, since they are aimed at supporting innovation, providing access to algorithms for innovative technological processes. They will help our entrepreneurs to move forward, develop.

It is easier for me to name issues that we have not managed to solve at the forum to the full. For example, one of the sick topics for small and medium-sized businesses in our region is limited access to financial resources due to various frameworks and criteria.

- Will the removal of these restrictions help sign a closer agreement? cooperation with the Bank of and medium business - MSWith the Bank?
- This agreement can not be called a solution to the issue. It is rather an attempt to move in the right direction. After all, now our entrepreneurs do not have access to the resources of the SMEs of the Bank, since this corporation has too high a bar on the volume of the loan. And when a businessman comes, say, for a loan of 2 million rubles, he can not get it, because the lower bar is higher. At the forum, we discussed possible solutions to this problem. Representatives of small and medium-sized businesses are also facing difficulties in preparing the documents necessary for obtaining loans. We spoke with representatives of SMEs of the Bank on cooperation on this issue. We also discussed work with the collateral fund, which we have. In addition, I hope that in the Magadan Region, in our MFC, now there will be a "remote window" for SMEs of the Bank. This moment was also worked out.

- You said that it is difficult for you to single out from the general series any one of the agreements signed at the forum. Perhaps it was worth calling an agreement on the construction of a plant for the production of liquefied hydrogen in the Magadan Region?
- Indeed, this is a major, innovative and very interesting project. If only because we are talking about the fuel of the future. In Japan, they already produce cars that run on hydrogen, and their number will only grow over time. Similar plans are voiced by car companies in Germany. Everyone understands: oil will ever end, and are looking for alternative options. Now hydrogen fuel is the most promising direction. Not surprisingly, the Japanese corporation Kawasaki was interested in signing an agreement to build a plant for its production in our region. The Japanese side appreciated the benefits of the availability of available electricity. After all, what is needed for the production of liquefied hydrogen is water and electricity. Therefore, our domestic company RusHydro has become another participant in the project. Today, this company has free energy capacity, not yet demanded by large consumers.

The Magadan Region has previously formulated its own conditions, on which it is ready to implement this project on our territory. We are interested in the format of a joint venture in which not only foreign, but also Russian business will take part. The preliminary agreements are taken into account in the agreement on the development of a feasibility study and further promotion of this project. It is signed on VEF. This agreement is not only a new round of work on the project of a hydrogen plant, but also a tremendous achievement. I believe that this project will completely change the structure of the economy of the Magadan region. This is also because, for the sake of its implementation, electricity tariffs have almost halved - this, of course, stimulates energy consumption.

- Does this mean that now projects that were postponed due to the high cost of energy resources will get a chance for a new life?
- Yes, there are plenty of such projects. Many are already in a hurry to use the prospects, which opens up to them a cheapening of electricity. For example, only in the last few days a number of large Russian companies - such as Susumanzoloto or Polymetal - have acquired licenses to develop new fields in our region. One of the subsoil users told me this: "Now, today we bought a license, and already in the next year there will already be a factory at this deposit."

- Are foreign investors interested in implementing projects in the Kolyma?
- Of course. One example of foreign direct investment in the region is the plant that Komatsu built in Magadan. This service company is engaged in the restoration of engines of cars that are manufactured in Japan - dump trucks, forklifts, etc. The plant works with buyers of Japanese equipment not only from the Magadan region, but also from neighboring regions. And today the enterprise has risen to a new level, offering a service of the highest level - for the restoration of used vehicles. After all, if the engine of a large dumper has worked its time, the purchase of a new one will cost about 20 thousand dollars. And to restore the amortized engine to the state of the new one at times cheaper - it will cost 4-5 thousand dollars. Having saved on buying a new engine, the company reduces costs and gets the opportunity to purchase new equipment. And even the time that repairs will take, consumers do not lose: an exchange fund has been set up at the plant. And the enterprise itself is ultramodern, everything is computerized, all employees are wearing white coats ... Well done, one word.

- Creation of high-tech service industries can become a new vector of development of the region?
- So far the basic direction for us is the development of large enterprises operating on ore deposits. The mining of alluvial gold still occupies a serious place in the structure of the region's economy, but gradually the ratio will change towards extraction of ore gold. And just with this vector we associate the prospects for the emergence of large energy-consuming industries, gold recovery factories using modern technologies. The reduction of electricity tariffs makes these prospects even more real.

"Australians mine coal in Chukotka." AndL of Omsukchan pool is interesting for foreign companiesyam?
- Indians show an interest in buying coal, but they are not ready to invest in production, they need a finished product. Therefore, it is necessary to look for investors who will be engaged in the development of coal deposits in this territory. And for investors to come, they need investments in transport infrastructure. You need to invest in additional exploration. The projected reserves of this field are huge, but very little has been put on the balance sheet so far. All these questions are solved, but this will take time. One of the ways is the creation of a TOP, which will in future create a coal cluster here.

- And how do you assess the agreement signed at the forum with the "Post Bank"?
- This agreement is no less important for us, since Pochta Bank is an authorized bank for lending to recipients of “Far Eastern hectares”. Until recently, this service was not available to residents of the region, although it was announced. Now the situation will change. This is especially important because in the Magadan region this program is implemented most effectively. Compared to other regions, we have the highest percentage in terms of the number of applications submitted and contracts executed - it is close to 100%.

Most applications come from local residents. Many of them already owned land, and now they took advantage of the situation to formalize them. But there are those who for the first time decided to get land and start their own business. Here is just one example, proving that the program really works: a family of five took five hectares in an abandoned village, where once there was agricultural production. In just one and a half months they built a new cowshed, now they are building a second one. All the money earned is invested in development. And, of course, we will help them, because such farms work for our domestic consumption, we do not export meat and milk outside the region.

"But is it possible for agriculture to be profitable in the permafrost zone?"
- Maybe. Of course, we do not have the most favorable conditions for this. But I live in the Magadan region almost all the conscious life, and I was convinced: the region is fully able to independently provide itself with agricultural products. At one time, we almost did not import potatoes, and now we ourselves close the need for it per cent on 70-80. The same situation with cabbage, beets, carrots. There are new fields, are willing to engage in growing vegetables.

We have almost completely restored the Soviet egg production, we are closing 70% of the demand, and we also supply products to Chukotka. We built our own incubator, and now we do not have to bring daily chickens, as before. Restored broiler production. While the project for the construction of a pig-breeding complex for 12 thousand heads is slowly progressing - issues with lending and investor search are being resolved. But this project will be implemented in due course.

Of course, to develop agriculture, it must be supported. We understand this, and we invest money in development. After all, the demand for locally produced products is very high. So, we are brought eggs from Novosibirsk. But our people are more willing to buy from the Dukchinsk poultry farm - they know for sure that they are fresh.

- Only local business is engaged in projects in the field of agriculture? Or are federal players interested in working in the region?
- They are not interested. After all, everything that is produced in our region cannot be taken out of its borders - the cost of transportation is too high, the price will immediately become uncompetitive. Therefore, all local agricultural products are designed exclusively for domestic consumption. The market is limited, the population is small. What creates its difficulties - our manufacturers have to compete with imported goods. But here the alignment of electricity tariffs should help.

- Are there prospects for population growth in the region?
- We have a prognosis of increasing the population as new jobs appear. In general, there are two sick issues in the sphere of labor resources today. The first is how to replace the age population with the able-bodied. We retire five years earlier, so the percentage of working pensioners is quite high. And those who are not ready to continue to work, you need to give the opportunity to leave. And this process should take place with the support of the state.

The second issue is intraregional migration. In order to restrain the outflow of residents, it is necessary to give the able-bodied population the opportunity to move to more favorable places for living within the region. For example, in Magadan, where there is all the necessary infrastructure for comfort, or the villages next to the capital of the region. Here, the climate is milder and there are plenty of jobs. There are even more vacancies than our domestic labor market is capable of closing. That is why we expect that the population will gradually grow. Already, dramatically, in the 5-6 times reduced the dynamics of the outflow. If in the first half of last year, almost 300 people left the region, this year, in the same period, only 30 has left.

- At the forum, the Magadan region presented two projects in the sphere of tourism - the creation of a recreational complex on the basis of the “Talaya” sanatorium and the construction of the all-season sports and tourist complex “Sunny. Magadan. What else is the region going to do for the development of tourism?
- First of all, implement projects related to improving transport accessibility. At the forum, we have already presented a project to build a new passenger terminal at Sokol Airport, and now we are looking for investors to implement it. We intend to modernize the entire airport infrastructure, including two airports for small aircraft. Modern air ports will need the region so that we can offer tourists new and interesting products. So, now together with Kamchatka we are preparing package proposals along the route “Magadan - Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky”. It will attract foreign tourists to Kolyma, which today are more interested in Kamchatka. Yes, and guests from the central part of Russia will be interested in spending, for example, five days in Kamchatka, and five in Magadan, and already from our airport to return to Moscow. The tourist potential of Kolyma is huge, and we will do everything necessary to realize it.
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