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How to make a career in Transbaikalia
Bystrinsky GOK opens the era of "new industrialization" in the Trans-Baikal Territory
Few weeks remain until September 1 - the deadline for when the national program for the development of the Far East should be presented in final form to the President for approval. Each of the DFO regions has already identified a system of priority projects, the support of which it will request from the federal government in the coming years and a longer perspective. Back in May, the Legislative Assembly of Transbaikalia approved its proposals to the national program - “A plan to accelerate the economic growth of the Trans-Baikal Territory to 2025 of the year”. This is actually a breakthrough strategy from the environment - after many years of struggle with the region’s lingering problems.
According to the calculations of the regional Ministry of Economics, for Transbaikalia today there are two most likely development scenarios. The first is the so-called inertia. It will not require additional incentives, will allow the region not to slip into stagnation and crisis and overcome the current recession, but in this case it is impossible to wait for “breakthroughs”. The maximum amount of growth of gross regional product to 2025, with such input - 41,7%. The second scenario is the target. It assumes 6-percent growth of the regional economy annually - with the support of Moscow and with the maximum use of its own resources and market mechanisms. In this case, we are talking about a dynamic increase in GRP - by 72% and a significant increase in investment volumes from today's 90 billion rubles a year to 163 billion. Exports, which now amount to 433,5 million dollars, will grow to 1,4 billion, that is, more than three times.
Intensification of production, staking on new technologies and market mechanisms are the main conditions for the development of the regional economy to follow the maximum scenario. The key driver for Transbaikalia has been and remains the mining industry. As stated by the Acting Governor of the Trans-Baikal Territory, Alexander Osipov, the administration of the region has given and will give priority attention to its support. In addition to traditional coal, the region intends to mine copper, silver, iron and gold on an industrial scale. Two projects are waiting for the greatest return: the launch of the mining and smelting plant at the Udokan copper deposit in 2022 (+ 11% GRP) and the full design capacity of the Bystrinsky mining and processing plant (+ 7% GRP already in 2020). Acting head of the region does not exclude that others will eventually be added to these projects.
Bystrinsky GOK was built by the Norilsk Nickel holding for record-breaking 3,5 of the year literally “in the open field”, in the Gazimuro-Zavodsky district of the Trans-Baikal Territory - one of the most remote and seismically complex places with a harsh climate. Today in Transbaikalia it is an example of the most successful implementation of a large investment project on the principles of public-private partnership. The head of Norilsk Nickel, Vladimir Potanin, once compared the construction of the Bystrinsky GOK to the great construction sites of the industrialization era. The work has indeed been done tremendously. With the support of the state and its own 90-billion-dollar investments by Norilsk Nickel, not only the plant itself and its support services, equipped with the most modern equipment and digital equipment, were erected, but also an external infrastructure was created. 234 km of power lines are stretched, 227 km of railway lines are laid. The effect was not long in coming. Thanks to BGOK, industrial growth in the Trans-Baikal Territory last year amounted to 4% (the average figure in Russia is modest 1%). For not the richest and most industrialized region, this is not just a success - a real victory.
The GOK is already in commissioning mode, enriching the ore of the Bystrinsky gold, copper and iron deposit - its 300-million reserves will last at least thirty years. Work is underway at four open pit mines, and in April the first batch of copper concentrate was exported to China. By 2021, GOK will reach its design capacity and will produce about 3 million tons of magnetite concentrate, 260 thousand tons of copper concentrate and 9,5 million troy ounces of gold.
This is a modern production that meets all international standards. The only plant in the country where it became possible to completely do without manual labor in the process of loading the concentrate into wagons. The best equipment is used at the quarries, the production processes (ore feed, crushing, filling and movement of the ore mass) are automated, in key areas the dispatching systems are fully “digitized”. BGOK provides jobs for about three and a half thousand people, and now there is an active recruitment of personnel for the new vacancies. They are very different - from miners and drivers of mining equipment to computer scientists, from welders to heads of production sites with fully automated lines. The influx of qualified personnel has a beneficial effect on the labor market and the migration situation in the province. As the general director of the Bystrinskoe mining company, Alexander Popov, explained, BGOK employs specialists from various regions - Moscow, Kuzbass, Norilsk, the Urals, and subjects of the Far Eastern Federal District. But the vast majority - about 80% - are residents of Transbaikalia itself.
Over the next few years, the Bystrinsky GOK will provide hundreds of millions of rubles in the form of tax deductions to the regional budget. Over a decade, this amount should be about 18 billion rubles. When such large enterprises operate in the region, not only the industrial sector, but also other market segments, the service sector, transport, and construction are revived. In 2018, Transbaikalian businessmen who won tenders for the purchase of goods and services for BGOK received about 365 million rubles. In 2019, the company plans to conduct more than 400 purchases worth over 4 billion rubles. Local business will be able to earn the lion's share of these funds. Supplies are required very different - for example, for the needs of the settlement of rotation workers, about 160 tons of vegetables and greens, 550 thousands of eggs per year, as well as many other goods will be needed. People cannot do without cinema and mass cultural events, without medical services - and this will also go to the region as an income. Plus office equipment, overalls, drilling and blasting, road maintenance, rental of premises and transport, advertising services, cleaning and so on. Small and medium-sized businesses will be where to turn. In addition, the company "Norilsk Nickel" has already announced its intention to send about 3 billion rubles to social programs in Transbaikalia.
According to Gennady Shevchuk, General Director of Vostokgeology, which is now completing the testing of all units and technological units of the BGOK before its final commissioning, the discovery of Bystrinsky GOK for the Trans-Baikal Territory is of tremendous, vital importance. Shevchuk notes that they always spoke about this region: “there are a lot of reserves, few deposits”. Bearing in mind that most of the deposits of coal, copper, gold, polymetals or molybdenum are not developed here because of unprofitability. “If Bystrinsky had not been opened and the combine was not built, the region’s economy would have become close to a catastrophe,” Shevchuk is sure.Now the tonality is completely different. Acting Governor of the Trans-Baikal Territory, Alexander Osipov is sure: Bystrinsky GOK will take leading positions in its industry and ensure economic growth throughout the region. And the infrastructure created for this project will allow attracting new investors in Transbaikalia.