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August 09, 2010

A delegation from Japan finished work in the Republic of Buryatia

Last Friday, 6 August 2010 was the last day of the business visit of the Japanese delegation, which was organized by METROPOL Group in cooperation with the Government of the Republic of Buryatia. During the five activity-packed days, the 22 Japanese businessmen not only had a chance to meet the leaders of the Republic, but also visited the most important and promising (in terms of investments) locations – the Ozernoe lead and zinc deposit and Baikal Harbor tourist and recreational special economic zone. Besides, the entertainment program for the delegation included visits to the Posolsky Spaso-Preobrazhensky monastery and Ivolginsky datsan, as well as a fascinating tour of the Bolsherechensky fish breeding factory. The guests learnt a lot about the Buryats and their culture in the Ulan-Ude Ethnographic Museum and the M. N. Khangalov Museum on the History of Buryatia.

During the meeting on the premises of the Government of Buryatia, M.V. Slipenchuk, Head of METROPOL Group and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Metals of Eastern Siberia Corporation, offered the guests from Japan a presentation on the prospects of development of non-ferrous metal deposits in Buryatia. The very next day the representatives of Japanese companies interested in the presentation (Sojitz, Nikko Citigroup, RONIS, Value Enterprises, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries) were invited to visit the Ozerny Mining and Processing Plant. Exploring the deposit’s open pit with 8.16 million tons of zinc, and visiting the shift workers’ camp for 300 people made a great impression on the guests. “Japan possesses innovative technologies and quite impressive financial resources, that is why I believe that both parties will benefit from sharing knowledge, technologies, and resources,” said Mikhail Slipenchuk in an interview to a Buryat TV company.

The members of the delegation showed a lot of interest in the Baikal Harbor tourist and recreational special economic zone. The presentation on special economic zones of the Russian Federation and on Baikal Harbor in particular was delivered by I.V. Kosov, General Director of JSC OEZ, who arrived from Ulan-Ude with this express purpose.
Before the presentation of Baikal Harbor, Metropolia special-purpose vessel took the Japanese guests aboard to visit the Peski and Turka fields. After that, the delegation was brought back to Metropolia, where I.V. Kosov together with M.M. Egorov, acting Minister of Economic Affairs of the Republic of Buryatia, S.A. Semenov, Head of Administration of the Pribaikalsky Region, and M.V. Slipenchuk, Head of METROPOL Group, presented an elaborate report on the legal status of special economic zones, investment climate in Buryatia’s tourism industry, work progress on the Baikal Harbor project, and lots of other issues essential for understanding and evaluating the prospects for investment into this project and other projects implemented in Transbaikalye.

When assessing the visit to Buryatia, Kenji Sugekawa, METROPOL’s advisor in Japan, noted that the members of the delegation received information on the investment projects in the republic only a short time ago, therefore it is very difficult to talk of any specific agreements, contracts, or amounts to be invested. However, A.E. Chepik, Deputy Head of the Government of Buryatia for Economic Development, does not expect that the results of the visit will follow right away, “As a rule, it takes Japanese investors three to four years from the first meeting to the start of investment. Let us hope that the first step has been made. We will see the results in three years.”


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