NOVO-OGAREVO, March 26. /ITAR-TASS/. President Vladimir Putin supported the idea of creating a model advanced development area on Russky Island in the Far East.
“We want to propose considering Russky Island a model advanced development area,” Alexander Osipov, First Deputy Minister for the Development of the Russian Far East, said at a meeting with President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday, March 26.
He said work was already underway to draft the relevant concept. Unique infrastructure was created on Russky as part of preparations for the APEC Summit in 2012, which made the island “Russia’s facade to the Asia Pacific Region [APR]”.
The purpose of the project is to turn Russky Island into a growth area based on scientific and research achievements. The island has laboratories, research centres, main university departments, and the offices of leading Russian state-owned companies. Negotiations are underway with the Russian Foundation for Advanced Research Projects to create a robotic technology testing ground there.
Putin said he liked the idea but warned against creating industries that could be harmful for the environment.
The project to create an advanced development area in the Far East aims to provide the most competitive conditions for investment and entrepreneurial activities in this part of Russia. This approach was successfully tested at the Sochi Olympics and the APEC Summit in Vladivostok. It is based on special legislation being drafted now. It will use the best experience of the APR countries in order to win over investors and spur economic activities and advanced development of the Far East. There are a number of industries that can have good prospects in the region: oil and gas, fisheries, wood-processing, production of aircraft and car components, shipbuilding and repairing, aircraft making.
Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich has suggested increasing several-fold areas for advanced development territories in the Far East as only 8,000 hectares have been selected so far. He believes that eight thousand of eight million hectares is “virtually nothing”.
Osipov hopes that the implementation of these measures will help double the gross regional product, create hundreds of thousands of new jobs and increase the region’s population by one million by 2025.