Alexey Likhachev: Direct investments from Germany to Russia have revived growth
The First Deputy Minister of Economic Development of the Russian Federation Alexey Likhachev and the State Secretary of the Ministry of Economy and Energy of Germany Matthias Machnig opened the first meeting of the Russian-German business platform and participated in a panel discussion on the implementation in Russia of the program of import substitution and localization of production, and associated technology transfer.
The event was organized by LLC "Business Russia" and the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs with participation of the Russian-German Chamber of Commerce and the Eastern Committee of German economy. The event was attended by about 60 representatives of leading Russian and German companies.
Alexey Likhachev noted that the trade turnover between the countries decreased in January - August of 2015 at 34-36%. The situation with the export of Russian deliveries to Germany and imports from Germany to Russia is a little different. "The volume of our commodity exports is increasing and, strange though it may seem, deliveries from Russia of machinery and equipment is growing in value terms, and of high-tech products by 3-6% even in the strict dollar terms," - he said.
The First Deputy Minister stressed that the loss of 9.2 billion US dollars in supplies from Germany to Russia - this is the profit lost by German companies. "And for us it is losing 6 billion US dollars in the sector of machinery and equipment and 1.7 billion US dollars in the sector of chemical products. This is an important high-tech import, import of investment goods in Russia, associated, inter alia, with technology transfer, using the best German management practices. We sure want to recover the increasing trend in our trade," - he said.
According to him, in recent years Germany has been the number one partner for Russia. While in Russia 6 000 enterprises with German capital are 70 000 jobs to the Russians, and the turnover of these companies has amounted to 50 billion US dollars. "It's an asset that we don't want not only to lose, but even to downplay,"- he said.
The First Deputy Minister noted that the statistical figures record an increase in income of direct investment from Germany. In the first quarter of 2015, the Russian economy has received about 585 million US dollars, thus the increase has amounted to almost 100% compared with the 1st quarter of 2014. Vivid examples of cooperation are the opening of the DMG Mori factory in Ulyanovsk, Volkswagen in Kaluga, Siemens in St. Petersburg, CLAAS in Krasnodar and others. "The localization of production, technology transfer is topic number one, which now are both the German and Russian entrepreneurs’ concern. Obviously, for entrepreneurs it is crucial to have a clear understanding of the "rules of the game", as well as of the processes taking place in the Russian economy", - he said.
Experts of the Ministry of Industry and Trade of Russia answered questions about the program's impact on the activities of German and Russian companies, the introduction of industry-specific criteria of localization, the possible benefits from entering into a special investment contract, forms of state support for industrial enterprises, etc.
The next meeting of the business platform will be held in Berlin.