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Far Eastern phenomenon
Yuri Krupnov Chairman of the Development Movement
- Yuri Vasilievich, please describe the socio-economic situation in the Far East?
- The situation is critical, since four extremely unfavorable processes are superimposed on each other. The first is general de-industrialization, which has been going on for almost 3 decades in the whole of the Russian Federation, but in the most severe form has affected the Far East. The second is the situation in the Russian economy as a whole, where the last quarter of the century lacks powerful promotion projects of development, which again, first of all, touched the DFO, since its development requires enormous investments - and we did not have the money or the strategy. The third process is an absolutely new phenomenon - China and the countries of Southeast Asia, which were still economically developed 30 years ago, today practically turned our Far East into a raw material appendage. Roughly speaking, the situation of the 10th-12th, when the Soviet Union helped China build factories, turned upside down to the exact opposite. From Russia raw materials are sent to the East, and in the structure of our trade as a whole, not only in the Far East, 1950% of machinery and equipment is imported from China. China - and by the human mass, and economically such factor with which it is not clear what to do.
And the fourth process - despite the active eastern policy of President Putin, the elites in their mass lost the strategic understanding of the Far East and the need for its hyperstat. We need to raise the status of the Far East tenfold, so that the most talented graduates of the leading universities of the country - MSU, Higher School of Economics, MAI, MIPT - want to go there. If we want the country to go forward, then one in thirty young specialists should want to go to the Far East. We have the same situation, that is, young people today are fleeing the Far East.
- You said that the Far East is not needed by the elites, but what about all the prescribed Strategies for the Development of the Far East?
- In your opinion, it turns out, Minskvokrazvitiya today does nothing?
- Minvostokrazvitiya at the moment the only one that is imbued with the situation. Young energetic team of the ministry can become an important element of strategy promotion. Another thing is that this new and effective strategy must first be developed. There are difficulties here, since there was practically no strategic planning for the last quarter of a century, there is no experience. Our Institute of Demography, Migration and Regional Development from the very beginning of the new team's activities suggested steps to standardize approaches to the rise of the Far East and the development of a strategy, but unfortunately, so far there is no real response to our initiative.
- Do you think that the Far East has a great chance of becoming Priority direction of the country's development?
- What kind of project development economy should there be, as you said?
- It is not aimed at survival, but on the creation of the phenomenon of planetary development, the transformation of the region. That is, the project economy should flow directly from the first point of the strategy - about the priority status of the region. Because if we regard the Far East as a kind of remote depressed territory that needs to be "thrown" from time to time, so people live and die there, they only do it, we will lose the Far East and Russia. In this sense, the project economy of development should be based on a clear understanding of how to design and create a planetary focus of development in the Far Eastern Federal District.
The most vivid designation of the lack of projects - the situation at the Vostochny cosmodrome: 100 billion rubles thrown into concrete, into the ground, built a launch pad (I am sure that the first Soyuz rocket will fly in December), a whole city - the science city of Tsiolkovsky - is already launching built, by the end of the year there will be several buildings on 31-5 thousand people. However, ask any person who is responsible for at least to some extent for this object, who will live there? Nobody knows. In addition, no one knows what the project of space activities in the Far East consists of. And there is money, and a lot of it.
“But the situation with the population is not so bad: last year, Chukotka became the first region in the Far East where there was a positive population growth trend.
- Chukotka is a region where for the past twenty-five years the largest outflow of population was observed - from 150 to 50 thousand people. Three times! Of course, if a number of projects of the Soviet period that were kept in an untouchable reserve, for example, gold mining at the same Kupol deposit, slightly shifted industrial production, then an increase of one or two thousand people - 2-5%, you see, this is not serious.
- Well, how then to attract the population to the Far East?
- No one said why to attract it. We have a colossal underutilization of the Far Eastern population. We have a deficit of not people, but jobs and, accordingly, qualified personnel. Svobodnensky district, where the cosmodrome is being built. What was before the construction of the cosmodrome? 13 thousand residents of the Svobodnensky district and a thousand jobs. The problem is not that we will even bring to these 13 thousand (according to statements even the President in Tsiolkovsky city there will be 40 thousand people), but that in absolutely labor-surplus region people do not know where to work: a lot of people leave "for west".
Or, take the ports. If Busan is a port occupying a worthy place in the top five of world ports, then there are no ports in the Russian Federation - these are porters. For the ports of Primorsky Krai, where a ton of coal goes for a hundred dollars, the maximum dollar goes to the regional budget is not even visible. Who has a project in the country, even if it’s a two-page conceptual, which port will we build so that it can be conditionally comparable to Busan? No one will tell you. But they will answer that we have solid transport corridors, free port, we will do it there, we will strengthen it, in Nakhodka we will have a new pier, etc. And there is no project. But what is a port? The port is not a berth, not warehouses, not transport, and even no customs regime, although this is extremely important. The port owner must own all access roads to it and the base fleet, including the oceanic one. We have almost none. Even if we create a megaport, that is, we build a pier, we will again collect pennies. Because the main thing will be collected by those who have ships, ports - Korea, Singapore, China.
- How do you feel about the idea of giving out Far Easterners and everyone who wants to live in the Far East, on 1 hectares of land for farming and business development?
- The fact that Trutnev proposed such a measure to the President is an application for the decisive development of the Far East. But again - so far the measure is isolated, non-systemic, that is, torn from the future integrated strategy and, therefore, divorced from reality.
Outstanding Russian economist and thinker-Far East Mikhail Ivanovich Ledenev put forward the idea of "His house on his land." This thesis should become the basis of strategy.
If, for example, you live 10 for years in the Far East, I’ll take you to 80% of the cost of the house, and 20% - you will pay. And the high-tech house will be. This mechanism for allocating land for housing construction has already been registered in the draft federal law, and I put forward this idea while working at the embassy in Khabarovsk in February 2008, it is called the “State Housing Certificate of the Far East”. But since then nobody has bothered to at least discuss it.
What does a full-fledged "home" mean? That is, to the hectare and the house you need to add that you will no longer have hyper-tariffs for housing and utilities, which operate in the Far East, and there will be a powerful car that you can buy on preferential terms. And it's better not only a jeep, but also a small airplane on 2-4 rights. After all, in Alaska, where 750 thousand people live, - 9 thousand private planes, that is, for every hundred people by plane! And for the whole of Russia in 146 million people - only 3,5 thousand small ships! To the Far East stood up in equal conditions with the resident of Alaska, the number of private aircraft in the Far East should be increased from less than 200 to 70 thousand, in 350 times. Consequently, the rise of the Far East requires, conditionally, forced aviation, where the number of small aircraft will grow at least 100 times, and we will produce them in the Far East itself. This is realism and utmost practicality, and giving away just acres of land is far from life fantasies, children's tales.
Where do we get the money? We are building a candle tower in the Tsiolkovsky science city for a wretched provincial project. Hruschbami want to return the world leadership in space? But we are building for our space, for our best youth. And who will go there? The center of shipbuilding in the Big Stone - prices are Moscow, including housing, and the average salary is 17 thousand rubles. Let's develop Russian shipbuilding!
At the plenipotentiary Trutnev, in principle, the correct approach. I remember how I was struck by his verdict about the next project about the Big Ussuri Island: “We don’t need any concept, we need a project that would fulfill the development function of the whole country!”.
This is the essence of the correct methodological and managerial approach for the Far East. We need not fictitious development projects, but each of them should give the country a development phenomenon, push the whole country forward ...
- Please tell us your opinion about the TOSER Law, which was adopted at the end of December last year.
- With TOSER the same as with hectares. The idea of TACER will play out if it becomes one of the elements in the system complex of at least 10-15 other mechanisms.
And for this we have everything, but there are no projects, the meaning of activity! Build houses in the same Tsiolkovsky - it is unclear for whom, graduates of advanced universities (MAI, MFTI) either leave to work abroad, or go to the store by guards.
In the Amur Region, as well as in the Jewish Autonomous Region, in the Khabarovsk and Primorsky Territories, up to about one and a half million tons of soybeans are grown. Unique, genetically modified soy, it is endemic here! It is desperately needed in our Siberia and central regions as a unique protein feed for livestock. One and a half million tons of soybeans per year is a “gold currency” resource, you just need to look at it a little in a business-like manner and improve agrotechnologies. To bring the volume of produced soybeans to at least 3 million tons. After all, the Chinese have twice the harvest than ours. And if we now give everything to China, then we will be imported genetically modified Argentinean, Brazilian, American soybeans. In order to work properly in the Far East, you need to take soybeans to Siberia, and from Siberia grain, which they don’t know where to go, and in the DFO it is not enough. Colossal project! Who will they deal with?
- Nevertheless, recently the vector of development of Russia is directed to the East. How do you think, how much is the Far East itself ready to meet these expectations?
- To justify the expectations or not - a question concerning both the government and every resident of the country. The development of the Far East is our national idea.
Once I was told that the Russians do not want to work and drink, but instead bring the Chinese - they will work in two shifts and so on. But it's a piss, it's insulting! Because the Chinese come what? Not from Shanghai, where his average salary is two to three times more than in Russia. He comes from these deep provinces, lives in a dugout for a half dollar, and here, in the same gracious Amur region, gets 300-400 dollars. How can you compare our peasant who was a combiner in the same Amur village, the first guy in the village, who earned money on Zhiguli? Now he drags out a miserable existence - and everyone here will drink. And what else to do? The state simply threw it. He still remembers how they were sent to the Crimea on a trade-union permit! And then this man was placed in the state of this Chinese from the deep provinces. And they let us down not because he stopped working and began to drink - no: just one day he woke up, the country collapsed - and, hello, the market has come!
But Russia has invested enormous forces in the Russian Far East! And she always overcame any difficulties that seem insurmountable.
Today, our Far East is the only savior of the country. Because either we will make a real breakthrough in the Far East, we will build here a new model of the economy, and this model will work - to make a profit and social wealth, just like a tablecloth-samobranka - or nothing will happen. Finally, we need to reach real development projects. We need to re-answer ourselves - why do we need a cosmodrome, what kind of a real port will we build, how will we design a new commercial and transportation fleet, crushed in 25 years, which new cities we must build for our most talented and heroic youth.
I have been promoting New Eastern policy for 13 years, I have more than 20 development projects for the region - but this is not necessary for anyone. This is the problem.