At the beginning of the conversation, the President suggested talking about investment. Sergei Nosov reported that the volume of investment in the region has increased by 36 percent during the five years of his term as Governor. Funds were invested not only in the mining industry but also in fishing industry, agriculture, tourism and energy sector. The region is one of the leaders in Russia in terms of investment per capita.
In terms of investment appeal, the Agency for Strategic Initiatives ranked the Magadan Region fourteenth in Russia in its ratings, up from the previous 53–54 place. The region tops the list in terms of organising a competitive environment and ranks second in terms of public-private partnership development.
The region is developing gold mining and will launch two gold extraction plants with an aggregate capacity of 10 tonnes. Gold output will increase by 20 percent. The Governor said the region would compete for first place in total gold extraction, although now it is first only in alluvial gold.
This year, the region will launch a complex for deep processing of fish oil with the use of modern technology, and all products are being considered for export. There is also investment in the social sector and agriculture.
The President noted that the people were leaving the region despite high salaries. The Governor explained that in his opinion high salaries are paid to shift and seasonal workers in the gold mining industry rather than to permanent residents. Therefore, the region drafted a programme for creating a comfortable environment with high living standards in Kolyma. Vladimir Putin emphasised that in deciding where to live, along with the salary, a person also considers the living conditions – housing and utilities, education, healthcare and the entire social sector. He noted that the region still has many problems in the housing and utilities sector. Mr Nosov reported that the region’s plans include a large-scale modernisation, upgrading of housing and communal services and the construction of new housing, including rental.
At the same time, the President noted that the main thing was the growing domestic regional product and industrial production in the region. According to the Governor, this allows the region to implement social projects and programmes, primarily those aimed at raising the incomes of people. Today, the poverty level in the Magadan Region is the lowest in Russia. Mr Nosov also mentioned a programme for children’s recreation, which is fully financed by the region, and high scholarships for students at special technical schools and colleges. There is even a queue for places in these institutions. People are coming from neighbouring regions. Mr Nosov also mentioned regional benefits paid in addition to those under federal programmes, including as part of the effort to support participants in the special military operation and their family members.
The Governor recalled that almost five years ago he came to head Kolyma following a Presidential instruction. Having been elected to this position and getting the support from the people, he was fulfilling the region’s goals. The region has a large programme for further development of Kolyma – 63 events worth a total of 220 billion roubles. It has already fulfilled part of this programme. The Governor said that if the President supported his nomination at the September gubernatorial elections, he would continue implementing Presidential instructions and programmes with the support of the region’s residents.
Vladimir Putin noted that Mr Nosov is capable of focusing his attention on resolving key tasks, so there would be no questions regarding approval, however, the most important thing is the support of the residents. Elections are elections, the President noted and advised Mr Nosov to work with the people directly and to listen to what they expect and want to see as a result of his work.