China is set to move a number of enterprises operating in 12 key sectors to the Russian Far East, Russia’s Ministry for Far East Development announced earlier this week. The sectors concerned include metallurgy, power engineering, (more…)
In an attempt to reduce its mounting debts, the Russian steel and mining conglomerate EVRAZ has put its facilities at the Far Eastern Nakhodka Trade Sea Port up for sale, it was reported yesterday, and has already received offers from around a dozen Russian, Kazakh and Chinese companies. The company has valued the port at $260m.
Founded in 1947 in Nakhodka Bay some 200km south-east of Vladivostok, the port is on one of the easternmost spurs of the Trans Siberian railway and as such is a key staging post for the movement of goods between Asia and Europe. It has the capacity to unload up to 500 rail wagons a day; each of its 16 berths can accommodate vessels of up to 230m in length and 32m in width; and it comes with 300,000m² of warehousing premises. Last year, the port handled 9.2m tons of cargo.
An integrated steel, mining and vanadium business with operations in the Russian Federation, Ukraine, USA, Canada, Czech Republic, Italy, Kazakhstan and South Africa, the LSE-listed EVRAZ is among the top steel producers in the world, but has been hit by the collapse in the price of steel, largely caused by Chinese over-production. Earlier this year it announced that it was planning to reduce its debt by as much as $1.5bn, but at the time ruled out the possibility of selling off any of its assets.
FEPCO: China’s chemical giant ChemChina yesterday agreed to enter into a joint venture with Rosneft to help Russia’s largest oil company move ahead with its plans for the construction of a state-of-the-art petrochemical complex as it looks to capitalise on growing industrial and consumer demand in the Asian markets on its doorstep. CEO Igor Sechin and ChemChina’s Ren Jianxin had (more…)sputniknews Read More»
A proposal put forward by MPs in Russia’s Duma to repopulate the country’s Far East region with Ukrainian refugees has won the approval of the Russian Ministry of Economic Development. The ministry expects some 50,000 jobs to be created in Eastern Siberia over the next five years, many of which (more…)ITAR-TASS Read More»
Far East Land Bill: Alex Galushka, Minister for the Development of the Russian Far East. yesterday submitted a revised version of the bill that would give every Russian citizen entitlement to take up ownership of one hectare of land in the Far Eastern Federal District to the Duma. The new version of the bill allows for interested applicants to club together to form collectives. It also specifies that these sites should be “at a distance of 10 km from the borders of the village with a population of more than 50 thousand, or at a distance of 20 km from the borders of the village with a population of over 300 thousand.” Initially proposed last year, the bill is an attempt to reverse or at least stem the steady exodus of people from the region which at 1.1km per square kilometre has a lower population density than Australia, Finland or Canada.
The law is expected to come into force in July next year.
The Free Port of Vladivostok has attracted its first investors since it secured SEZ status this summer, in the form of a $78.2m 182-room five-star hotel at Slavyanka. Located 170km south of Vladivostok, the hotel will be developed by the Sino-Russian Pacific Ocean Investment Company, a joint venture between Russia’s Transit-DB Holding and two Chinese companies – Zhun Gun Sin and the High Way construction firm. The hotels should be ready to open its doors within two years, Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister Yuri Trutnev said today.
He also confirmed that approval had been given for the joint Sino-Russia $100m expansion of Zarubino port close to the border between the two countries, designed to give shippers better access to and from Northeast Asia.
The first casino in the far eastern Primorye gambling zone – that is being billed as Russia’s answer to Macao – opened for business this week. Owned and developed by G1 Entertainment, The Tigre de Cristal casino is the largest in Russia so far and is expected to create new jobs and boost tourism and economic growth in the region, Corporate Finance and Strategy Director Eric Landheer said at the opening ceremony.
The decision to create the Primorye gambling zone close to Vladivostok was taken by the Russian government in 2009, when it outlawed gambling in Russia with the exception of six special zones. So far, only two of those zones — Azov-City in Krasnodar and Siberian Coin in Altai — have managed to turn their special status into money-making entertainment complexes, but Primorye’s proximity to the Asian markets has helped it to attract major Asian investors such as Melco and the Malaysian NagaCorp Ltd. Other investors in the project also include local Royal Time Primorye and Diamond Fortune Holdings Prim.
As well as the casino, the 620-ha gambling zone will also include 15 hotels, 12 guest villas, a yacht club, a multifunctional trade and exhibition centre, and several cinemas. The project is due to be completed in 2022. Four investment contracts worth $1.75bn have been signed so far, according to the authorities.
Far East development: Russia’s plans to plough investment into the country’s Far Eastern territories is in line with Chinese plans for the region, Chinese Vice Premier Wang Yang told delegates at the the Far East Economic Forum in Vladivostok on Saturday, “The …strategy (more…)The Moscow Times Read More»
Russia’s state-run Rosgeo this week announced that it had discovered significant new coal deposits on Sakhalin Island off the country’s Far East coast. The deposits were found in Yuzhno-Berezovsky and lie outside of the mammoth Sakhalin integrated oil and gas development area, the company confirmed.
Although Russia (more…)
In an attempt to consolidate its presence in Russia’s oil and gas sector, Royal Dutch Shell has opened discussion with Gazprom about the possibility of swapping one of its international energy assets for a stake in the Russian company’s Sakhalin-3 oil and gas development in the North-West Pacific.
“Russia is sitting (more…)
Lena bridge: A group of Chinese companies including the China Railway Construction Corporation, China Development Bank (CDB), Hua Tsing An Zu and three other construction companies are considering putting up the money to build a bridge across the river Lena that would give it access to the Trans-Siberian railway.
“We are extremely interested in the project,” Hua Tsing An Zu Chairman Mr Chzu Chun Yuiwe, said this week. “By combining global technologies, and Chinese experience, we could build a bridge in three and a half years.”
The Russian authorities invited tenders for the construction of the bridge last year, but the project was shelved as the economy went into recession and funds were diverted into the development of newly-annexed Crimea.
Russia would welcome Japan’s participation in its plans to improve living standards on the disputed Kuril Islands, Sakhalin’s acting Governor Oleg Kozhemyako said last week. A nine-year federal program is due to swing into action next year.
The disputed island were annexed by Soviet forces during the Manchurian Strategic Offensive Operation at the end of World War II and are currently administered as the South Kuril District of the Sakhalin Oblast; but Japan also claims sovereignty over four of them – Etorofu, Kunarishi, Shitkotan and Habomai – in the Southern Kuril chain.
“The idea of inviting Japanese companies to the Kurils is a practical one,” says Petr Samoylenko, head of the Vladivostok-based Regional Center for Asian-Pacific Studies in the Russian Institute for Strategic Studies told RBTH. “As the territory is and will stay Russian, inviting Japan to participate in the regional economic initiatives, can help to avoid much of the political rhetoric and find a consensus beneficial for all,” he added.“It is also within Russian interests to diversify its Foreign Economic Activities in the Far East and to include all major Eastern powers – Japan, China and Korea. All of them are interested in participating in lucrative investment projects in the Russian Far East.”
“If Japan is not interested, we could also propose that other neighbouring countries such as South Korea take part in the program,” Kozhemyako added, perhaps a little pointedly.
Around 30 million (mainly young ) Russians, would move thousands of miles to take advantage of the governments’s Far East land handout, according to a poll conducted by the VTSIOM market research company.
The poll took place on the eve of a public discussion about Moscow’s plan to give away one-hectare plots of land in Russia’s Far Easter territories – a radical attempt to reverse a potentially catastrophic population decline in the country’s Pacific Rim and to effect a sixfold increase in inhabitants from 6.4m to 36m.
Under the terms of the scheme, Russians would be offered land that could be use for farming, forestry or simply for smallholdings. Anybody taking up the offer would be able to sell the plot once they had lived on it and developed it for a period of five years.
Some 28% of those surveyed said they wanted to organise individual self-sufficient homesteads on their land; 19% said they would like to become farmers while 16% said that the land grants was an opportunity for them to change their place of residence, said the press service of the Ministry for Far Eastern Development.