A delegation from the Sverdlovsk Region, headed by Governor Eduard Rossel, today arrived in Sophia on an official visit. According to the press office of the Sverdlovsk Region's Ministry for International and Foreign Economic Ties, the programme of the visit includes a meeting with Bulgarian President Georgi Parvanov and members of the Bulgarian Government. The meeting will discuss the progress of preparations for the opening of a Bulgarian Consulate General in Yekaterinburg. Agreement on opening the consulate was reached earlier in September at a meeting between Parvanov and Russian President Vladimir Putin.
The meeting will also discuss issues related to organising direct inter-regional ties with Bulgarian administrative districts, cooperation in the small and medium-sized business sectors, healthcare, tourism and culture. In addition, a presentation on the Sverdlovsk Region's economic potential is being held today in Plovdiv at the International Technical Fair. Bulgarian Prime Minister Simeon Saxe-Coburg Gotha will be taking part in the event alongside the members of the delegation.
The delegation includes the deputy head of the regional administration, Alexander Levin, Minister for International and Foreign Economic Ties Yuri Osintsev, Minister for Trade, Food and Services Vera Solovev, and also representatives of the Central Ural region's industrial firms and the heads of the Ural divisions of various banks.
The Sverdlovsk Region's trade balance with Bulgaria totaled USD 3,1 million in 2001. Trade grew by 24.3% in 2001 and a further 12% in the first half of 2002. Around 20 joint ventures with Bulgaria have been established in the Sverdlovsk Region.