News / Europe

Vladivostok Aspires to be Hot Pacific Rim City

Russia Plans to Turn Vladivostok into Hot Pacific Rim Cityi
|| 0:00:00
X
James Brooke
September 27, 2012
The world spotlight shone on Vladivostok in early September when 20 Asia-Pacific heads of government gathered for a business conference in Russia’s main Pacific port. Looking ahead, James Brooke reports about concrete plans to build Vladivostok into a hot Pacific Rim city.
TEXT SIZE - +
— The world spotlight shone on Vladivostok in early September when 20 Asia-Pacific heads of government gathered for a business conference in Russia’s main Pacific port.

Looking ahead, regional officials and investors are working to turn Vladivostok into Russia’s first hot Pacific Rim city.

The region’s new governor, Vladimir Miklushevsky, says a key will be to attract investment from China - and to cut red tape. He is lining up investors for 19 development projects totaling $95 billion over the next decade.

 “We are going to reduce the administrative barriers for business projects,” he said.

Near the new $200 million airport, construction starts next year on a “Northern Macao” - Russia’s largest casino and resort complex

 “We are planning to develop it has an integrated resort, with gambling used as an anchor, and we’re planning to receive 10-12 million tourists a year,”  said Miklushvesky, governor of Russia’s Primorye region. “Why is tourism possible in Vladivostok?  First, it’s the unique location of Primorye.  There is a population from 200 to 300 million people within a one- to two-hour flight from us.  Of course, I mean citizens of China, Korea, and Japan.  And we are waiting for, and anticipating, their arrival.”

Salavat Rezbaev says another key to the region’s development will be investment from China. He is brokering Chinese investment for a $4 billion new port, and $30 billion new town.

 “Seven to 10 years ago, it would be unimaginable to offer a serious level of Chinese investment in certain areas of the economy, certain sectors,” said Rezbaev, who is chairman of New Age Capital Partners. “Right now, we’re witnessing it.  Not only are we witnessing it, we’re doing it, and we’re getting support from the regulators, from the government.”

Top-level backing was clear in early September when President Vladimir Putin inaugurated a plant to assemble Japanese Mazda cars in Vladivostok. Elizaveta Badalova represents Sollers, the Russian side of the joint venture.  Sollers also assembles SsangYong cars from South Korea in Vladivostok.

“Customers in Vladivostok used to buy used vehicles and the vehicles from Japan,” Badalova said.  “But now when they see their own plants and their own territory working, I think the impression is better.”

Foreign investors praise Vladivostok’s central location.

Clive Bowen, from Britain, plans to build a $200 million motor sports center near the new airport. 

“We are within an hour to an hour-and-a-half from all of the key markets for motor sports in Asia - so you have Japan, South Korea, and China,” he said, joined by the Russian Project President Vitaly Verkeenko.

By embracing Asia, Russia may finally create its own hot city on the Pacific Rim.

James Brooke

A foreign correspondent who has reported from five continents, Brooke, known universally as Jim, is the Voice of America bureau chief for Russia and former Soviet Union countries. From his base in Moscow, Jim roams Russia and Russia’s southern neighbors.

You May Like

Algerians Vote in Presidential Election

There were few media reports of protests and clashes around the country, but so far no significant violence More

Sharks More Evolved than Previously Thought

The discovery could “profoundly affect our understanding of evolutionary history” More

Pakistan Military Asked to Protect Polio Workers

Request comes as authorities say a Taliban ban on vaccinations in 2012 and deadly attacks on anti-polio teams have prevented thousands of children from getting inoculated More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Gennady from: Russia, Volga region
September 27, 2012 11:27 AM
For 12 years the regime was unable to eradicate sharp difference in Russia’s regional development. Why will Vladivostok be an exception? Mr Putin in his May’s Decree wanted the government to address the problem but nothing happened as some ministers opposed to the Decree. http://www.kremlin.ru/news/16493, http://www.kremlin.ru/news/16503. In an interview to Vedomosti.ru a high ranking bureaucrat said “Its easy (for the President) to throw money (billions $) and promises than to build new roads in the Far East as they are being destroyed by rains”. It sounds as if no other country in the South-East Asia has any road.

In Response

by: Charlie from: UK
October 01, 2012 4:34 PM
The ways things work are the same in Russia and China.If you want the contracts,you come up with some bankhand money,and you can forget about all the nitty gritty.For years the Russians have been worried about large Chinese immigrant population in Vladivostok.With more investments from China that would open the floodgate to more Chinese which could pose a threat to Russian sovereignty in the near future when the Chinese immigrants decide to break away from Russia and join up with Mother China as it has happened in former Yugoslavia.

What's the point in having foreign investment when it doesn't create jobs or improve the way of life for the local population? Would China have got to where it is today if the West and Japan have invested in the same way as them? Just get the resources,make the money and forget about polution,exploitation and sufferings

In Response

by: Jonathan Huang from: canada
September 28, 2012 10:10 PM
worry01fromus, you are wrong, China's investment focus on natural resources, so there is no such thing as investment return, as long as we have the accesses to those resources, we will keep invest. Another main investment is market, the main problem in Russia is the consistence of policies, if you dont have a fix rule how can we play a fair game? And for sure Russia is worried about too much China influence.

In Response

by: Worry01 from: U.S.
September 28, 2012 4:19 AM
I would be a bit wary. If China is only offering short-term investment, the residents could be left holding the bag for projects that Chinese companies decide to abandon. Some African countries have had that experience in recent years with some Chinese firms. The Chinese failed to take into account the poor infrastructure and skill level of the workforce, and lost patience when their capital investment did not yield rapid returns.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Google Buys Drone Companyi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
George Putic
April 15, 2014
In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Ray Bonneville Sings the Blues and More on New CD

Singer/songwriter Ray Bonneville has released a new CD called “Easy Gone” with music that reflects his musical and personal journey from French-speaking Canada to his current home in Austin,Texas. The eclectic artist’s fan base extends from Texas to various parts of North America and Europe. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin.
Video

Video Millions Labor in Pakistan's Informal Economy

The World Bank says that in Pakistan, roughly 70 percent work in the so-called informal sector, a part of the economy that is unregulated and untaxed. VOA's Sharon Behn reports from Islamabad on how the informal sector impact's the Pakistani economy.
Video

Video Passover Celebrates Liberation from Bondage

Jewish people around the world are celebrating Passover, a commemoration of their liberation from slavery in Egypt more than 3,300 years ago. According to scripture, God helped the Jews, led by Moses, escape bondage in Egypt and cross the Red Sea into the desert. Zlatica Hoke reports that the story of the Jewish Exodus resonates with other people trying to escape slave-like conditions.
Video

Video Police Pursue Hate Crime Charges Against Kansas Shooting Suspect

Prosecutors are sifting through the evidence in the wake of Sunday’s shootings in a suburb of Kansas City, Missouri that left three people dead. A suspect in the shootings taken into custody is a white supremacist. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, he was well-known to law enforcement agencies and human rights groups alike.
Video

Video In Eastern Ukraine, Pro-unity Activists Emerge from Shadows

Amid the pro-Russian uprisings in eastern Ukraine, there is a large body of activists who support Ukrainian unity and reject Russian intervention. Their activities have remained largely underground, but they are preparing to take on their pro-Moscow opponents, as Henry Ridgwell reports from the eastern city of Donetsk.
Video

Video Basket Maker’s Skills Have World Reach

A prestigious craft show in the U.S. capital offers one-of-a-kind creations by more than 120 artists working in a variety of media. As VOA’s Julie Taboh reports from Washington, one artist lucky enough to be selected says sharing her skills with women overseas is just as significant.
Video

Video UN Report Urges Speedier Action to Avoid Climate Disaster

A new United Nations report says the world must switch from fossil fuels to cleaner energy sources to control the effects of climate change. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the report (Sunday) following a meeting of scientists and government representatives in Berlin. The comprehensive review follows two recent IPCC reports that detail the certainty of climate change, its impacts and in this most recent report what to do about it. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble has the details.
AppleAndroid