OREANDA-NEWS. The Second Russia-China Trade and Economic Forum has been held at the World Trade Center Moscow on the Krasnopresnenskaya Embankment.

CCI of Russia Vice-President Dmitry Kurochkin and CCI of Russia Department of External Relations and Liaison with Business Councils Director Vladimir Padalko attended the event.

CCI of Russia Committee of Economic Integration with SCO and CIS Member Countries Chairman, World Trade Center Moscow JSC General Director Vladimir Salamatov was the first to present his report at the meeting. The Russian visit of Chinese President Xi Jinping and its results brought the bilateral relations to a new level, he said. The two great nations agreed to closer political and economic interaction, and that will have an effect on the global economic and political affairs, he said.

Russia entered into the World Trade Organization in 2012, and its principles and rules became mandatory for Russia. China has been a WTO member since 2001. Its imports and exports have grown significantly, while the export/import correlation is close to one. This means China lost nothing after its accession to the WTO but gained economic growth.

On the whole, tariff barriers worldwide have an obvious trend towards lessening. Quality, safety and competitiveness of a commodity become the main criteria of success. The World Trade Center Moscow General Director spoke about settlement of technical regulation problems at the Customs Union. A number of technical regulations have already being used, and some are going to be brought into force shortly. Failure to meet these requirements will soon become a serious impediment to improvident companies, which hope to keep delivering extremely cheap commodities badly made of low quality raw materials, Vladimir Salamatov stressed.

The delegates were told about the Russia in the WTO international business center set up at the World Trade Center Moscow on the Krasnopresnenskaya Embankment last July at the CCI of Russia initiative by its Director Yury Gubenko. The center is focused on disseminating information about WTO instruments and rules forming a floor for interaction between the government and businesses in WTO issues, and professional training of WTO specialists. There are no similar centers in Russia. It is open to Russian and foreign businessmen. The center director informed the audience about changes of duties levied by Russia in the transitional period since the admission to the WTO and stressed that most of them were bound to protect foreign investments and bolster their business in Russia. He cited as an example the Russian car industry, which had been joined by many big automobile companies. Speaking of the major trade partners of Russia, Yury Gubenko said that the European Union ranked first on the list of corporate partners, while China was the first national partner (accounting for 11% of Russian foreign trade).

Ling Ji, Minister Counselor for Economic and Commercial Affairs at the Chinese Embassy in Moscow, noted that Russia and China had recovered from the acute stage of the global economic crisis with lesser losses than other states.

GDP is growing steadily in both countries. The economic restructuring is supposed to assist the countries to take strong positions in the contemporary global high-tech production. Following the Russian visit of the Chinese president one may state there is a political will and economic prerequisites for accelerated development of bilateral cooperation. He said that China intended to take active part in the Russian program of the development of Siberia and the Far East.

Mounting investment options of Russia and significance of CCI of Russia work for attracting Chinese investments were the subjects of the speech of CCI of Russia Vice-President Dmitry Kurochkin. As it was noted at the Chinese-Russian summit on March 22, Russia-China trade enlarged by 11.2% to USD 88.16 billion in 2012, he said. That is a good foundation for shifting to a higher form of cooperation, investments and innovations.

Judging by the Ernst&Young survey made in 2012, Russia is listed amongst the top ten countries most appealing to foreign investors. The objective reasons for that are well known: Russia is one of the biggest consumer markets of the world and its human capital and scientific schools have earned international recognition. Naturally, our colossal natural resources attract interest and the geographic position may be called unique from the point of view of the world transport routes from China to Europe.

But this is not enough. We are critical of the current business and investment climate and have been taking significant efforts to improve it over recent years. It is worth mentioning the Russian State Council meeting President Vladimir Putin chaired on December 27, 2012, which was dedicated to a higher investment appeal of Russian regions. Russian chambers of commerce and industries took the most active part in preparations for that meeting.

Then Dmitry Kurochkin presented the CCI of Russia system to the audience (apart from the headquarters, the CCI of Russia, the system comprises 174 regional and municipal chambers, 18 representative offices abroad and 70 business councils. The subsidiaries include the World Trade Center Moscow and Expocentre – one of the biggest exhibition floors in the country, and the International Commercial Court of Arbitration, whose scale of operations exceeds those of the courts in London, Stockholm and Vienna).

The CCI of Russia is an efficient floor for presentation of the investment potential of Russian regions and CIS countries. Such events are regular, and the next presentation, that of the Kostroma region, has been scheduled for April 10. We may become a reliable and skilled expert to Chinese partners and not only recommend the most promising regions and industries from the investment point of view but also provide support to investment projects in regions, Kurochkin said.

The Chamber vice-president said there were at least five reasons for a Chinese investor to interact with the CCI system, i.e. the developed federal, regional and municipal networks; close contact with regional administration and chambers, which would offer cooperation only with dependable and verified regional partners; projects started up with the assistance of the CCI of Russia stay in the focus of attention and we are ready to offer their further support in regions through our partnerships; and any disputes may be settled quickly at the CCI of Russia Court of Arbitration and the International Commercial Court of Arbitration at the CCI of Russia; we are ready to provide information and analytical support.

Dmitry Kurochkin also presented key areas of the CCI of Russia operations in investments: interaction with authorities towards improvement of legislative acts, development of investment fostering infrastructure and information and organizational cooperation.

The CCI of Russia vice-president gave special attention to the Chamber’s contacts with investment partners, including those from China.

China International Trade Association Deputy Secretary General Cui Dianjia spoke about the activity of his organization and stressed that Chinese President Xi Jinping made his first foreign visit to Russia, which pointed to more intensive cooperation and growth of bilateral trade to USD 100 and even USD 200 billion within the next few years.

CCI of Russia Department of External Relations and Liaison with Business Councils Director Vladimir Padalko made a brief, substantive and informative speech. There may be different ways of business interaction between the two countries, he said. We are offering our capacities. These are the Russia-China Business Council, a public organization assisting in the implementation of USD 10 billion worth projects in China with the participation of Russian entrepreneurs. These are also Russian and Chinese public organizations supporting the attraction of investments. Finally, these are representatives of the CCI of Russia in China (the chamber has two capable offices in Beijing and Shanghai). Investors from China may receive serious information support from the CCI of Russia; they will be brought to every floor they need, helped draw up agreements and study regional terms of work and in certain cases registration of their investment projects will be accompanied. On the other hand, a Russian businessman interested in the Chinese market may appeal to a regional chamber; he will be connected to a chamber representative in China, who will get in touch with Chinese organizations and help find the needed partner. We have not had a single case of unfair competition in three years and that proves the high quality of work, Vladimir Padalko said.

SCO Business Council Executive Secretary Sergey Kanavsky, Changsha Medical University Rector He Pinshen, International Strategic Innovation and Technology Alliance General Director Vladimir Remyga, Daozon LLC General Director Alexander Khanykov, Jiasu Industrial Company head Chen Kuangyu and some others addressed the forum.

The delegates discussed various aspects of bilateral business cooperation and presented projects of the biggest interest to Russian and Chinese investors.