The Minister Alexey Ulyukaev took part in the XXVII Meeting of the Foreign Investment Advisory Council in Russia on October 21
«The situation in Russian economy significantly depends on the situation in the global economy. It should be noted that we have sought to do this some time ago. But in this situation, there are pluses and minuses. When the global economy starts to slow down or enters a phase of development of the crisis, of course, this creates corresponding difficulties for us. It is known that the leading international organizations have revised their forecasts relative to global economy growth recently: IMF reduced the expected world GDP from 3.1 to 2.9 %. The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development has lowered it even more significant - up to 1.8%. The World Bank reduced the expected world GDP from 2.4 to 2.2 %», - noted the Prime Minister, the Chairman of the Foreign Investment Advisory Council in the Russian Federation Dmitry Medvedev.
«Assessments are different, as you can see, but they certainly reflect a general sense of what is going on, so in this background the slowdown in economic growth in our country seems to be more or less natural. But, of course, we are not happy relative to this. For eight months of 2013 the growth of Russian GDP was 1.5 %, and in 2012 it was more than 4 %. Industrial growth is almost zero. Growth expectations for the year range in the region of 2 % at the best. Of course, one of the key factors is the foreign economic situation given the fact that our economy has export-oriented nature», - concluded the Prime Minister of the Russian Federation.
According to him, the other macroeconomic indicators are stable. «We have low unemployment rate, very small when compared with other countries; public debt, almost balanced budget, stable currency and very significant gold reserves and foreign exchange reserves. But we need to move forward and implement a complex of systematic measures aimed at creating a comfortable business environment, flow of investments, acceleration of the development and attenuation of any kind of difficulties, including infrastructure constraints».
The Chairman of the Government of the Russian Federation described the priorities of the activities of Russian Cabinet of Ministers in the near future including the improvement of the investment climate in the country:
- reducing costs in the economy;
- creating additional conditions for large-scale appearance of investments in the real sector of the economy and in the infrastructure development;
- developing public-private partnerships, concessions;
- developing the regional business environment through the introduction of investment standard in the subjects of the Russian Federation.
The Coordinator of foreign participants of FIAC, the Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of EY Mark Weinberger expressed confidence that Russia made significant progress in creating a favorable investment climate. In many ways it happened thanks to the coordinated fruitful work in the framework of working groups of FIAC. «When next Doing Business rating is published, we hope that the progress of Russia will be reflected in comparison to last year, and last year you raised by 8 points. This rating reflects the results of cooperation between the Government of the Russian Federation and the international business community to improve the investment environment in the country, but more things need to be done. Strategic issues include entrepreneurship. Unfortunately, in Russia only 15% of workplaces are created in small and medium-sized businesses, but in the efficient economies this percentage reaches 60-70%. You need to do more to develop the small and medium-sized businesses, innovations», - said Mark Weinberger.
In his speech the Minister Alexey Ulyukaev stressed the importance of the development of several directions: mechanism of public-private partnerships; spheres of small and medium-sized businesses. «Public-private partnership is a powerful tool to attract significant investments in our infrastructure projects, projects relative to diversification of the economy. Such form as concessions is well developed, especially in the area of road construction. We are in dialogue, including the dialogue with EBRD, and we consider other forms of public-private partnership. Our framework law on public-private partnership is preparing to undergo during the second reading in the State Duma».
As for the development of small and medium-sized businesses, according to the words of the Minister of Economic Development of the Russian Federation, serious steps have been taken in this direction in the part of saving the preferential treatment of the payment of insurance premiums at the level of 20%. «At least it fixed until 2018», - explained he.
In the part of creating the mechanism of contracting, starting from January of next year at least 15 % of the federal, municipal, and development institutions orders and orders of public companies should be placed among the subjects of SMEs. «Furthermore, we are conducting a great work in the part of creating the financial fundamentals for functioning the small and medium-sized businesses complementing the system of regional guarantee funds. We are working to create a federal guarantee fund, which, being non-bank credit institution, will have the right to give guarantees», - said the Minister.
During the meeting the results of the working groups of FIAC on improving the investment climate in Russia were discussed. Participants considered the issues of availability of bank credits, developing the streamline procedures for moving goods across the border and regulating labor resources, mechanisms to encourage utilizing and recycling the consumer goods, applying new standards for wastewater and water supply for industrial enterprises.
The joint communiqué was adopted on the results of the meeting of the Advisory Council.
For reference only:
Foreign Investment Advisory Council in Russia (hereinafter - FIAC, the Advisory Council, the Council) has been acting since 1994. The Chairman of the Advisory Council is the Chairman of the Government of the Russian Federation. Deputy Chairman of the Advisory Council and the Chairman of the Executive Committee of FIAC is the Minister of Economic Development of the Russian Federation.
In accordance with the provision on the rotation approved by the Chairman of the Executive Committee of FIAC the Advisory Council is formed from the leaders of foreign organizations implementing investments in the economy of the Russian Federation, international organizations and other organizations that are actively involved in efforts to create a favorable investment climate and encourage investment processes in the economy of the Russian Federation.
The Council shall perform the following functions:
- preparing proposals aimed at improving the investment attractiveness of the economy of the Russian Federation in the framework of the priority directions of the activity of the Council and the problems of foreign institutional investors;
- considering proposals and recommendations within the established competence proposed by federal executive bodies and foreign organizations;
- examining disagreements between federal executive bodies and foreign organizations, which leaders are members of the Council, on issues within the competence of the Council;
- giving instructions in the prescribed manner for federal executive bodies and recommendations for the leaders of foreign organizations - members of the Council on issues relating to the implementation of the public policy in the field of investment activity, attracting foreign investments into the economy of the Russian Federation and resolution of the problems of foreign investors;
- annual approving the list of priority directions of its activity basing on the priorities of the economic development of the Russian Federation and the most significant problems, which foreign investors have.
In the framework of activities of the working groups of the Advisory Council several priority directions of FIAC activity relative to the planning period of work (1 year) are determined annually basing on the priorities of the economic development of the Russian Federation and the most significant problems, which foreign investors have (according to their assessments).
In 2013 the following directions were determined as the priority directions for the Advisory Council activity: energy efficiency, administrative barriers and technical regulations, customs laws, tax laws, banking sector and financial markets, trade and consumer sectors, improving the image of Russia, increasing the use of natural resources.
In order to operatively resolve issues related to the activities of foreign investors, consideration and implementation of the proposals and recommendations of the Advisory Council, as well as promotion of the implementation of related decisions and orders the Executive Committee of FIAC was established.