Kaliningrad mayor Yury Savenkov is soon going soon form two or three local free economic zones similar to those in Chine, he said at a press-conference on the results of a visit of a North Western delegation to China. The mayor says, “We started economic reforms almost simultaneously with China; however, the results differ drastically. The reason is that the initiators of Kaliningrad’s free economic zone, the government, haven’t had and even haven’t now any clear idea of what a free economic zone is and how it is to be created. After the visit to China, I understand that to accomplish the objective, compensatory payments are not necessary to put the Kaliningrad region on par with other Russian regions. Instead, considerable incentives are required to attract investment and advanced technologies are necessary to create export-oriented production, not import substituting like today.”
The Kaliningrad mayor also thinks that China’s experience in creating free economic zones can be also used in the region and, at that, local legislation should be amended. However, the most important measures, including management of the region, should be taken on the federal level, Yury Savenkov thinks. He added that the Kaliningrad region could become one of Russia’s points of great economic growth, like China’s province of Zhejiang.
Anna Marinina PRAVDA.Ru
Translated by Maria Gousseva
Read the original in Russian: http://pravda.ru/north-west/2002/07/23/44526.html