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Exporters go to TOP
Special economic regimes in the Far East proved to be favorable for the development of export-oriented projects
The priority development of the regions of the Russian Far East is ensured by the creation of a number of instruments that open the way for entrepreneurs and investors. The magazine "Russian Exporter" tells how the modes of the Territories of Advanced Development (TOP) and the Free Port of Vladivostok (SPV) were in demand among exporters.
What does the TOR or Free Port regime give to exporters? In fact, there are no special measures that would specifically and specifically address the export of products, these economic regimes do not provide. There are a number of private measures that, of course, optimize the processes of foreign economic activity. These include the possibility of creating a free customs zone (FCZ) at a resident's enterprise, which allows you to import equipment and goods for processing duty free, and then export products. The norms of the Free Port of Vladivostok, which obliged the border crossings of the Primorsky Territory to switch to round-the-clock operation, were also significant for export-import operations. However, by and large, these economic regimes are aimed at optimizing investment and doing business in the Far East, while export is more likely an objective motivator for investors to come to the Far East.
In the opinion of the Minister of the Russian Federation for the Development of the Far East, Alexander Galushka, the system of mechanisms and institutions for development is aimed at "expanding freedom of economic and entrepreneurial activity, increasing profitability and reducing the risks of investing in the macroregion."
Both TORA and the Free Port of Vladivostok allow businesses to significantly optimize the economic model when working in the Far East. In addition to the widely used benefits for optimizing the income tax and property tax, these regimes have, for example, such benefits as the optimization of social payments to the wage fund. Residents for up to 10 years pay insurance premiums in the amount of 7,6% instead of 30%, which provides significant savings, especially for projects that employ highly qualified and highly paid staff.
According to Alexander Krutikov, Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Territorial Development, "the attractiveness of the territories of advanced development is determined by three basic elements. The first one is tax benefits. The second is the availability of infrastructure. The third component is a special management system for such territories. At the heart of this system is a simple principle: the investor is always right. "
What is interesting, to claim such support, having received the status of a resident of the Free Port or TOR, can companies from young to old. The minimum "threshold" of investment is 500 thousand rubles. for TOROV and 5 million rubles. for the Free Port. At the same time, it is possible to apply for preferential treatment both to new companies starting a business from scratch and to existing enterprises investing in technological modernization or expansion of production. Practice shows that small and medium businesses are really starting to enjoy benefits: among existing residents there are companies that employ only 10 – 15 people.
Business case for export
In October last year it became known that the Canadian manufacturer of building sandwich panels, choosing a supplier of thermal insulation, purchased a batch of Khabarovsk plant products of the company "TechnoNIKOL." The warmth was promptly delivered to Vancouver by sea, and representatives of the company reported on a successful export deal. The uniqueness of this story is that by the time of delivery the plant has not even reached the designed capacity: it started its operation just one month before the deal.
Domestic company "TechnoNIKOL" is one of the largest international manufacturers of building materials. Today the company has 51 production site in seven countries of the world. The products are shipped in more than 80 states.
The plant in Khabarovsk was built on the terms of preferential economic regime of the territory of advanced development and initially assumed the development including export strategy. According to the company, the annual output of the Khabarovsk plant is 750 thousand cubic meters. M.
At the same time, as Vladimir Markov, General Director of OOO "TechnoNIKOL - Building Systems" noted at the session "New business conditions in the Far East: the first success stories" of the Russian Investment Forum in Sochi, "we understand that we will have to export 60-70% of materials Outside the region - to China and Japan. " According to Vladimir Markov, one of the reasons that prompted the company to build the plant in the Khabarovsk TOR was that "in the immediate vicinity is a country with 1,3 billion people of the population - China."
“In our profile - in construction materials - the Chinese markets are about 6 – 7 times larger than all the Russian markets combined. China's technology is in many ways old, focused on human labor, not automated, not technological, and quality issues are highly relevant. Literally 3 a month ago, we won a big contract in Shanghai, although our price was one and a half times higher than the cost of similar Chinese materials, ”noted Vladimir Markov.
In general, according to the investor, the application of the preferential treatment of the TOR gives the company significant advantages: “In a short period of 2016, we received benefits for about 13 million rubles, despite the fact that for 10 years the planned amount of benefits will be 700 million rubles. And if you compare 2,1 billion investment and 700 million, this is a very significant support for the business. "
The first success prompts us to develop an export strategy - from the words of Vladimir Markov, now the company is considering further investments: "... we want to invest another billion dollars in the same TOP and build a factory for roll materials. He will be at 50-60% aimed at the needs of China. "
In addition to the representative of the company "TekhnoNIKOL", at the mentioned session of the Sochi forum there was a whole series of businessmen who invested in the TOR of the Far East. Interestingly, each of them, talking about business strategy, mentioned the development of exports.
It was notable for Vadim Moshkovich, chairman of the board of directors of the Rusagro group of companies, who is currently building the largest pig-breeding complex in Mikhailovsky in the Primorsky Territory, focusing on the Chinese market.
"We have half of the world living along the border: China, Japan, Korea, India. The potential of the Far East is tens of times higher than domestic needs, "Mr. Moshkovich said. In his words, in addition to investing in a pig-breeding complex, the Rusagro Group considers two more markets for itself: the processing of milk, where up to one billion dollars can be invested, and drinking water (private investments may amount to 500 billion rubles).
The Far Eastern TORs and the Free Port acquire special significance for business in the context of how these regimes are distributed across the territory. If initially the special economic zones appeared in separate points, having an attractive location for investors, now the trend is obvious to "cover" preferential regimes practically the whole territory that has the potential for economic development.
The geography of TORs began with seven points scattered across the territory of the federal district: two in Primorye, two in the Khabarovsk Territory, two in the Amur Region, one each in Chukotka, Kamchatka and Yakutia. Today, the TORs are already 17 (of which two are in the process of creation), and the Free Port Vladivostok regime extends to two dozen municipalities in five regions of the Far Eastern Federal District: Primorye, Khabarovsk and Kamchatka, Sakhalin and Chukotka. In fact today, only a few large Far Eastern cities do not have a territory with a preferential economic regime within their borders or in close proximity. For the time being, Magadan remains (in which, meanwhile, the regime of the special economic zone - SEZ) and Mirny operates.
Considering that from the point of view of tax benefits and administrative preferences, the TOR and Free Port regimes are almost identical (the principal difference is that infrastructure can be created at the state expense in the TOP, and there is no infrastructure in the Free Port), today in the Far East a system is created Almost universal granting of privileges to business. And, according to the official data of the Ministry of Regional Development of Russia (as of 1 March 2017), there is a demand for such a proposal: the total number of applications for residency in TOPs and the Free Port has already exceeded 500, and the total investment on them is rapidly approaching 1 trillion rub.
Obviously, as these developments continue, these indicators will grow substantially, according to some estimates, by the end of this year, after the inclusion of a number of large hydrocarbon processing projects into preferential treatment (VNKh, Amursky GPP, etc.), the investment amount will approach 3 trillion rub.
From export of raw materials to processing for export
“New investments are diversifying the structure of the macro-region,” comments Alexander Galushka, Minister of the Russian Federation for the Development of the Far East. - 73% new businesses are not associated with the extraction of natural resources. These are manufacturing, logistics, agriculture, tourism. ”
Structural changes are largely motivated by a general concept of the development of the macroregion. The state approach to the development of the Far East is based on openness and integration in the economic space of the Asia-Pacific region. It is from there that the main investments are awaited today, and markets for products are also located there. It is no secret that it was joint projects in the Far East that made up at least half of the Russian-Japanese business agenda during the visit to Japan of the Russian President Vladimir Putin in December 2016. No less systematic is the interaction with neighboring China, which already participates in several Projects with their investments. In addition, work is underway to "open" the Chinese market for products of Russian enterprises (for example, in the field of agriculture).
Against this background, with the continuing demand of the APR countries for Russian raw materials (oil, gas, coal, timber, etc.), projects involving processing in Russia are becoming particularly noticeable and significant. On the one hand, this is facilitated by the policy of the Government of the Russian Federation (the Far Eastern privileges are not granted to raw materials projects for the extraction and export of hydrocarbons). On the other hand, the economic factors that emerged as a result of the devaluation of the ruble are no less significant.
An interesting detail, but today labor in Russia costs the investor sometimes cheaper than labor in neighboring China. Favorable prices are offered on other resources. According to the official bulletin of the Far East Agency for Attracting Investments, electricity is offered to investors in TOR on 0,06 cent per kWh (which is 1,5 times cheaper than in China, and more than 2 times cheaper than in Japan). Even more profitable is the offer for natural gas - it costs 9 cents per cubic meter. m (in China - in 2,5 times more expensive, in Japan - in 6,5 times more expensive).
It is in this logic - the processing in Russia for the subsequent delivery of export products for re-sale - is being implemented today a number of major projects. Under two of them - the project of VNKhK and the project of the Amur Gas Processing Plant (GPP) - even separate TORs are created: "Petrochemical" and "Free", respectively.
Thus, the petrochemical cluster in Nakhodka (the "Petrochemical" project for the VNKh project) will enable Primorsky Krai "to meet its growing needs for high-quality fuel, and to help its neighbors in the Far East," said Vladimir Miklushevsky, governor of the Primorsky Territory. - In addition, the implementation of this project, in my opinion, is an important step for the transition from the export of raw materials to the supply of goods with high added value to the markets of the Asia-Pacific region. According to experts, for 10 years the regional product will only grow by 2,5 from realization of these projects ".
As for the Amur GPP, this is an enterprise with a design capacity of 49 billion cubic meters. m per year, built on the basis of the Power of Siberia export gas pipeline, will be the largest in Russia and one of the largest in the world. Purified methane will be supplied for gas supply and gasification of the regions of Eastern Siberia and the Far East and for export to China. Valuable chemical components extracted at the plant will become raw materials for another large industrial facility, the Amur Gas Chemical Complex, which SIBUR plans to build. The GPP will also include the world's largest helium production.
Export logic is also present in relatively smaller projects. About export ambitions said, for example, the resident of the Free Port - the company "Vostok-Polikor." The investor has already built and launched an enterprise in Vladivostok for the production of household chemicals and polyurethane products for cleaning surfaces. Currently, the production line capacity is about 40 tons of finished products per month. Today, work is underway to increase production to 200 tons of finished products per month. So far, the products manufactured at the Vostok-Polikor plant are sold in the territory of the Primorsky Territory and other Far Eastern regions. However, in the future, the investor plans to send 50% of the volume of production for export to China and South Korea.
AKOR Instrument company also intends to export products, announcing its intention to build a plant in Komsomolsk TRA to manufacture and restore carbide metal-cutting tools and cases for cutters. The investor plans to invest in the production of 674 million rubles, which will allow the company to produce up to 250 thousand tools per year. As the general director of the company, Anatoly Korogodsky, notes, “the plant’s capacities are designed for the entire Far East and for export to neighboring countries.” The company can start work this year: the launch is scheduled for December.
Thus, exports become a unifying idea for most of the projects that are launched today in the Far East. Eliminating this topic at a recent forum in Sochi, the representative of the DNS Group (included in the top 50 of the largest private companies by Forbes version), Vladimir Bogdanenko: "At the end of 2013-2014, when the retail expansion in the country was completed (now we have more than 1400 Stores in Russia), we thought about how to diversify our business, until we discovered the Klondike underfoot. Primorye is really a region of great opportunities: in a radius of 500 km from Vladivostok, half a billion people live. There is no such resource in any region of our country. Their provision is a very important and serious project. "
Ivan Sukhanov, Head of the Center for Export Support and Development of the Khabarovsk Territory:
- In the export structure of the region, of course, raw materials still prevail. But the situation is gradually changing. For example, thanks to the development of wood processing in the world markets, not just a “round log” is represented, but also the products of several regional woodworking enterprises. Small and medium enterprises make a significant contribution to this: it is difficult to dive into foreign markets with raw materials, we need a scale. Small business is usually a producer-supplier. An example is the very same “forest products” that are actively supplied abroad.
It can not be said that the region exports large quantities of products of deep processing, the products are innovative. But there are also such examples: the Dalkhimpharm plant, which produces unique medicines, the Dalenergomash plant that exports equipment. In addition, there are companies that work on contracts and subcontracts with foreign customers to develop various IT technologies. For example, White Soft periodically travels with us to international events and establishes working contacts.
The main obstacles to small exporters to external markets are lack of funds and lack of information. I would put them in equal positions. On the one hand, the enterprise may have the possibility of financing, but it does not know where to go and where to start. On the other hand, putting products outside is really a resource-intensive task.
Very useful in this regard for small business international exhibitions formats Expo. The nearest exhibition will be held 15-19 June in Harbin. The status of the Russian-Chinese EXPO is growing all the time - it involves the vice-premiers of the two states. This year we are taking him to a company from the Khabarovsk Territory. We will make a block in the exposition of the region, where local producers can present their products. Participation in the Expo is absolutely free, business pays for flights only and some additional services if they need it.
Experience shows that such contacts are the most effective, they lead to the conclusion of real export contracts. This is what business lacks: the opportunity to present a product to a person.
Of course, the main emphasis this year will be on food products. "Russian food" - high-quality, environmentally friendly, delicious - is in great demand in China. But we are ready to take manufacturers from other industries.
Our entrepreneurs already understand that it is very important to meet face-to-face with potential partners. Previously, local businessmen were passive. Now use the opportunity b2b-meetings more active. Flight and accommodation are relatively small costs compared to the effect. And the costs directly to participate in Russian or foreign exhibitions, which so far few people know, can be partially compensated by the regional budget - up to 70% of the registration fee and the cost of six square meters of exhibition space.
Going abroad in terms of establishing export links is always better than taking guests. Those who come with delegations to Russia tend to want to sell something of their own.
To motivate the business to export not raw materials, but products with high added value can only build the appropriate state policy. This should be reflected in the reduced lending rate, for example. It is necessary for the entrepreneur to see clearly: the state will support him more if he delivers the "board" to foreign markets, and less if the "log". Russian products will always be in demand abroad due to its quality and cost.
Published in the journal "Russian exporter"