The second All-Russian investment Sabantuy “Trans-Urals-2020” was held in the city of Sibay of the Republic of Bashkortostan on August 19 and 20, 2020. Investsabantui was organized by the Agency for Strategic Initiatives and the Government of the Republic of Bashkortostan. Representatives of federal and regional government bodies, Russian and foreign business, investors, experts and public figures were invited to participate in the business program of the forum. A significant place was given to increasing the attractiveness of the Republic of Belarus as a tourist destination and attracting investment in this industry. The Vice-President of the All-Russian public organization “Investment Russia” Arkady AMELIN took part in the work of Investsabantui. Our correspondent asked him a few questions:
– The world is gripped by the coronavirus pandemic. A number of countries announced the beginning of the second wave. In your opinion, is it advisable to hold such a representative event in such conditions?
– For me, “Trans-Urals-2020” is the first forum of such a scale and level that I managed to visit after the beginning of the global penetration of COVID-19. I believe that InvestsaBantui is absolutely justified and expedient. It is important that the situation in Russia has stabilized in recent months. Recently, the President of Russia announced the official registration of the Russian vaccine against coronavirus. Of course, the spread of infection is a threat, but it cannot be allowed to stop the implementation of landmark investment projects and paralyze business life. In addition, “Zauralie-2020” was held in strict compliance with the recommendations of Rospotrebnadzor for holding events and ensuring all security measures – the organizers demanded that the participants wear masks, hand was treated with a disinfectant solution, etc.
– What can you say about the preliminary results of the forum?
– As part of the business program in Sibay, twenty-three key agreements of intent, partnership and investment were signed for a total amount of over 10 billion rubles, which cover various sectors of the economy. For example, one of the most important agreements was concluded with the Center for Strategic Research (CSR). The document was signed by the Head of Bashkortostan Radiy Khabirov and the President of the CSR Alexander Sinitsyn. Of course, tourism is in the focus of attention of the republic’s leadership. In particular, an agreement was signed between the Government of the Republic of Belarus, the administration of the Nurimanovsky and Karaidel districts on the creation of a tourist and recreational cluster “Pavlovskoe reservoir”. A number of documents were signed in the fields of medicine and ecology, which is also related to the development of tourism. So, for example, on the territory of the Baymaksky district it was decided to build a waste processing complex. An agreement on cooperation between the Federal Environmental Operator and the Government of the Republic of Belarus in terms of creating conditions for safe waste management and elimination of accumulated environmental damage on the territory of the republic has been officially formalized. The ecology will improve to the delight of both locals and tourists.
– What can you say about Bashkortostan today? How are things going with economic development, attracting investments?
– It was noted at the forum that at the moment Bashkortostan ranks first in the extraction and production of a wide range of products, from primary oil refining to the production of aircraft engines. At the same time, there is great potential for further development, including in non-resource sectors of the economy. Bashkortostan is in the top ten regions in terms of investments. Last year, the republic attracted 322 billion rubles, which is 13.6% more than in 2018. Growth continues this year despite the pandemic. However, I did not feel any signs of dizziness from success. According to Rustam Muratov, Deputy Prime Minister of the Government and Minister of Economic Development and Investment Policy of the Republic of Bashkortostan, work to improve the investment climate in Bashkortostan continues and remains one of the special tasks under control. In this regard, an effective system has been built up in the republic, and such initiatives as the practice of investment hours with the head of the region and the institution of business sheriffs will be interesting, perhaps, on an all-Russian scale.
– And what about transport accessibility and conditions for car tourists in Bashkiria?
– Two federal highways pass here. The task of developing roadside service in the republic was set by the head of the region, Radiy Khabirov, and special attention was paid to this issue at the investment Sabantui “Trans-Urals-2020” at the strategic session with the heads of municipalities. Next year, Bashkortostan will host two major international events – the Apimondia Congress and the Folkloriada, which should provide the republic with a significant flow of tourists and participants. Representatives of more than 80 countries will visit Belarus, so now it is necessary to make every effort to provide them with the necessary comfort. The republic’s plans are to reconstruct or build an additional 250 roadside service facilities to the existing 1100. This is mainly about the construction of new roadside cafes and motels.
– Do you think the republic is capable of the planned changes?
– For me, two factors are the key to Bashkiria’s success in achieving the designated goals. This is the will, determination and dedication of the leadership of Bashkortostan, headed by Radiy Khabirov, on the one hand, and the indifference of the people inhabiting this blessed land, on the other. A vivid example of this is the situation with the shihan Kushtau. I will clarify for those who are not dedicated. In Bashkiria, not far from Sterlitamak, there is a very distinctive natural complex – three hills (shikhana) in the river valley. The place is unique – dozens of rare animals, plants and birds live here, some of which are listed in the Red Book. Moreover, these places are very popular with tourists. The slopes of the hills were chosen by paragliders. Two shikhans are part of the Toratau Geopark and are under state protection, while the third hill, Kushtau, is under threat of total destruction. The Bashkir Soda Company decided to start mining the mountain and mining. Citizens of the republic – local residents, ecologists, social activists – rose to defend Kushtau. And not without reason – the third shihan, perhaps the most popular and significant of all. It is not only a unique natural site. Kushtau has a ski resort and recreation centers. It is also interesting as a historical monument – archaeologists have found a Bronze Age treasure in Kushtau – weapons and other items. As a result, the shihan was defended and will not be developed. It should be noted here the wise position of the leadership of Bashkortostan, headed by Radiy Khabirov. It was decided that Shikhan Kushtau will be given the status of a specially protected natural area.
– Tell me, Arkady, as Vice-President of the All-Russian public organization “Investment Russia” and a columnist for our portal, what did you learn from the “Trans-Urals-2020”?
– My colleagues and I are looking closely at the Republic of Bashkortostan with great interest. Successes and development prospects, as they say, are obvious. We have projects in the field of tourism, which we provide active assistance in neighboring regions – in Udmurtia and the Perm Territory. Let me remind you that I am the head of a working group in our organization on investment in tourism facilities. So, we would like to establish closer relations with Bashkiria. I managed to conduct very meaningful negotiations at the forum with a number of responsible officials of the Republic of Belarus, and this inspires hope for successful cooperation.