The President started the meeting by noting a reduction in the region’s agricultural production in contrast to the country’s overall growth in agricultural production, as well as the diminishing scope of local construction projects.
Vasily Golubev reported that the region is taking measures to resume the operation of the companies producing poultry and eggs. As for the construction industry, there has been a decline, mainly in housing construction. The governor promised that new construction sites would be developed and the annual plan was being adjusted but the performance goals set for 2024 would be achieved.
Vladimir Putin also noted that the region has seen a greater decline in its permanent population than the national average. The President stressed two aspects, one being the quality of social infrastructure. The number of medical doctors in Rostov Region per 10,000 people is below the national average. The same applies to the number of places available at preschool facilities. The second aspect is a relatively high unemployment rate despite the fact that Rostov Region has developed industrial production and opportunities for agricultural activity.
Vasily Golubev admitted that there had been setbacks in these areas and noted that efforts would be made to reverse the situation.
As per the President’s request, the governor spoke about the progress in the wind power industry. The first wind farms were built in the region last March, by two major partners, Rosatom and RUSNANO, as well as Fortum of Finland and Enel of Italy. Three new plants producing components for wind power production were opened, in Taganrog and Volgodonsk. Currently, two wind farms with a capacity of 200 MW are fully functional while by the end of 2022 there will be eight farms producing 700 MW to 800 MW in total.
Vasily Golubev also reported on the measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. The current task is to ensure that the situation remains stable and to find solutions to minimise the spread.
The economic results of industrial and agricultural production, as well as small and medium-sized businesses were also discussed. The investment trend was described as good. The Governor spoke about adjustments to the programme of the region’s socio-economic development until 2030 and preparations for the new academic year and the heating season. Work is in process on the presidential instructions on the Rostov transport ring and construction at the old airport terminal.
The Governor also spoke about some regional problems, such as high electricity costs, especially for industrial consumers, which reduces investment appeal. Relevant work is being conducted with the Energy Ministry. The Governor recalled that since 2007, the water management situation in the basin of the Don River remains fairly tense. Six sectors of the economy depend on the river, including water supplies, fishing, navigation, and reclamation, to name a few. This is a serious problem. It concerns many regions and, of course, many people as well. Mr Golubev asked the President to give instructions to the relevant officials to study this problem.
The issue of culture was also discussed. Rostov Region is home to the famous Kvasov State Song and Dance Company that will have its 85th anniversary next year. The Governor asked the President to provide a grant to support it. The President promised him to draft a relevant instruction, noting that the Ministry of Culture and other relevant departments must take part in this.
In conclusion, Vladimir Putin said that Mr Golubev is an experienced leader and has long been working in the region. The President also noted that industrial production growth rates in the region are above the national average. The regional domestic product continues growing, which is also a fairly positive sign in the development of the region. Regional finances are in good shape; the debt load is minimal and the amount of dilapidated housing is below the national average. Investment projects have good prospects in the area. The leaders of the region should support the efforts of businesses to create new jobs that will be well-paid, high quality, modern and high-tech with a view to ensuring the region’s development in the near future.
The President wished every success to Mr Golubev and his team in this respect and expressed the hope that the Governor will use all his knowledge and experience to achieve these results.