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YUZHNO-SAKHALINSK, July 16 (Itar-Tass) - Russian President Vladimir Putin believes that Sakhalin has become a world-level energy center, and called for continuing its development.
"Sakhalin's geographical location and the established ties with countries of the Asian-Pacific region create solid groundwork for setting up a world-level energy center there without exaggeration," he underlined at a conference on developing the region, "further development of such a center and the increase in hydrocarbon production should be accompanied by the commissioning of new processing capacities, and the construction of modern companies of the oil and gas and gas chemical industries which will operate not only for foreign markets, but also for the domestic one."
The president urged to pay special attention to expanding the gas supply network in the Sakhalin region. "The resource base should meet the demands of the region itself in full measure, ensuring stable and effective functioning of local companies and utilities," he said.
Separately, Putin drew the participants' attention to the development of the transport infrastructure in Russia's Far East. "I suggest we discuss this topic today and the ways to ensure uninterrupted and safe transportation between Sakhalin, the Kuril Islands and Kamchatka," he said.
For the Kuril Islands, the issue of reliable transport link has crucial significance, the president added.
The opportunities of the Sakhalin region should be used to full extent.
The rates are good; the region has a decent potential in processing industry and agriculture, and, in the first place, in fisheries, although the indicators have somewhat decreased in the recent months. The task is to realize the region's potential, support the projects aimed at diversification of the regional economy, creating new jobs, and strengthening the social infrastructure with the view of raising the standard of living, according to the president.