Ulyanovsk Region: Prospects for Russian-Japanese Cooperation
Governor Sergey Morozov took part in the forum "Russian-Japanese Cooperation: New Challenges, New Reality", which was held in the regional center.
The event took place online and was attended by more than 250 people: experts from Japanese and Russian industrial companies, business associations, federal development institutions and relevant ministries. The main topics included current projects and prospects for cooperation between the two countries in response to the new economic situation.
Opening the forum, the Governor noted that despite the pandemic, the Ulyanovsk region and Japan would not suspend their cooperation.
Sergey Morozov said, “In recent years, we have seen sustainable development of the effective partnership between our region and the Land of the Rising Sun. More than ten Japanese companies placed their production facilities in the Ulyanovsk region, which attracted almost a billion dollars of direct investment in the economy and created more than one thousand new jobs. Some of them are Isuzu, Bridgestone and Mitsubishi, DMG MORI, Takata. The interest and high performance of Japanese businesses, as well as intensive development of bilateral partnerships, helped the region to deepened its integration into international value chains. The pandemic changed the format of our meetings, but I am sure that now they will be even more productive.”
Toyohisa Kozuki, Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Ambassador of Japan to the Russian Federation, also addressed participants of the forum. He talked about the major contribution of the Ulyanovsk region to the development of Russian-Japanese relations.
He said, “I took part in the opening ceremony of the Bridgestone plant in Ulyanovsk in 2017 and asked the company's management why they had selected the Ulyanovsk region. They were choosing from 40 Russian cities; Ulyanovsk attracted them with its convenient logistics, highly qualified personnel, the living environment, but you can find all of these in other regions too. The decisive factor was the government's focus on the investor, proactive attitude of Governor Sergey Morozov and high-quality administrative support for the development team.”
The participants were also welcomed by Vladimir Ilyichev, Deputy Minister of Economic Development of the Russian Federation. He noted that the forum takes place as part of the Year of Russian-Japanese Interregional and Twin-City Exchanges, which was extended by the Memorandum of June 2019 signed between the Ministry of Economic Development of Russia and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan. One of the most important tasks that the forum aims to address is promotion of economic interactions between Russian regions and Japanese prefectures. During the event, the Ulyanovsk region demonstrated its strong motivation to continue developing relations with Japanese companies, attracting direct investment and localizing new enterprises in the region.
“Ulyanovsk region is one of the leaders in the number of successfully implemented investment projects presented by Japanese companies. We have established a long-standing partnership with several prefectures in Japan and are actively interacting with the leading business associations such as Keidanren (Japan Business Federation), JETRO (Japan External Trade Organization) and ROTOBO (Japan Association for Trade with Russia & NIS). This helps us to understand the priorities of Japanese businesses and their requirements in Russia. Japanese companies are of great interest to the Ulyanovsk business, primarily due to their digital and technological achievements, as well as the free capital that can be used for investments into creation of joint ventures. Eighty percent of Ulyanovsk entrepreneurs stated this in the recent survey,” - said Sergey Vasin, Director General of Ulyanovsk Region Development Corporation.
The head of the development institute also identified promising industries for localization of Japanese companies. Today these include agricultural machinery and power engineering industries, as well as manufacturing of cars and components for them, consumer commodities, health care products and components for the renewable energy sector.