Titanium Valley SEZ, together with the Association of Industrial Parks in partnership with the Urals Federal University, have organized an international conference on “Vectors of development of industrial sites in changing global market conditions”
The first part of the event was devoted to discussion of best practices in creating industrial parks in the BRIKS, АPR and East European countries, as well as defining key aspects for increasing the competitiveness of Russian industrial sites.
Executive Director of the Association of Industrial Parks of Russia Denis Zhuravsky, who acted as discussion moderator, remarked that Russia is now seeing a growth of vacant plots in industrial parks. This is happening against a background of unsatisfied demand for foreign investors: the expectations of potential residents frequently differ from infrastructural realities at industrial sites. Experts put this situation down to under-financing. According to results of research carried out by the Association of Industrial Parks of Russia, the average amount of investments for creating industrial parks is three times less than the investments required, and is only 5 instead of 15 million rubles per hectare.
Vice-President of Vnesheconombank Irina Makieva has also expressed the opinion that infrastructure development is one of the potential points for increasing the attractiveness of Russian technical parks. She emphasized that in the regions, there is a re-evaluation of the readiness of industrial sites to receive their residents.
Participating in the event were the adviser to the Industrial Parks Association for Japan and APR countries Ivao Ohasi (Japan), the adviser to the Mayor of Haiphong for business and investments, the Director General of Nomura Haiphong Industrial Park Eichi Yumoto (Japan) and vice-president for business development in Russia of the YIT Group, Yukka-Pekka Uuskoski (Finland). They underlined that, besides tax and other privileges, for foreign investors, no less important are convenient location and ready infrastructure with available connection points, a proven and transparent legal property structure, a clear understanding of final temporary and financial costs, qualitative submission of all necessary information, and other factors. An important step can be made by attracting the “anchoring investor” – a large company with a global name which will give a positive signal to other potential residents.
In conclusion, the experts agreed that a key role in improving the competitiveness of Russian industrial sites is played by state measures to finance such projects.
As part of the conference, the prospects for regional innovative eco-system development were also discussed. Representatives of business and research communities, as well as the authorities, assessed the potential and requirements of the industrial sites opened in Russia. As Director General of Titanium Valley SEZ Artemy Kyzlasov emphasized, large industrial sites cannot be competitive if developed individually. They should act as a catalyst for a certain movement resulting in development of the environment, and of a regional innovative eco-system.”
Participants in the discussion pointed out that this process is hampered primarily by the absence of established communications both inside and outside the community – at inter-regional and international levels. This problem can be solved by the creation of specialized centers for development of innovations and information sites for potential investors, and other activities proposed by experts. At the end of Innoprom 2014, all recommendations will be published on the Titanium Valley SEZ website.