President of Russia Dmitry Medvedev: Good afternoon, Alexander Nikolayevich,
I have two main questions. First, the holiday season is coming to a close. Of course, there is still some time left and many of our citizens might still make use of this chance. But nonetheless, I would like to hear your report on the results so far of the holiday season in Krasnodar Region, because this region really is the main holiday centre for our people. What problems do you face, and what is the outlook for the future?
The second question is also completely natural given that the harvest campaign is now underway. What is the situation? What kind of harvest can we expect, and what still needs to be done to ensure it is maintained?
Governor of Krasnodar Region Alexander Tkachev: Dmitry Anatolyevich, agriculture and tourism are indeed the two main economic sectors our region has been developing very actively over the last decades. I will start with tourism.
We have had a total of around 15 million visitors this year so far, mostly domestic tourists, and this represents a 5-percent increase on last year’s result. In other words, people in our country still place their trust in Krasnodar Region’s holiday resorts.
The results of this growth are making their effect felt not only in terms visitor numbers but also in terms of the investors and businesses that are actively developing the coast and building new sites. A government decision has established five free economic tourism and recreation zones where major federal and private investment will be made to develop new types of resorts using new technology. I hope that this will all go ahead.
Of course, our main concerns today relate to infrastructure, especially roads. The roads to the resorts in Gelendjik, Anapa and Sochi require particular attention and serious investment needs to be made, because a huge number of people from practically all around the country use these roads. I am therefore grateful to the state for the support and the money invested in developing the region’s resorts. We will remain consistent in this development policy.
Dmitry Medvedev: As far as developing the tourism industry’s service sector goes, I think we need to work on ensuring that Krasnodar Region’s resorts – and they really are the main holiday destination for our people – cover a range of different economic options. By this I mean that people should have the choice of decent economy-class resorts and also resorts offering premium services. I think this is important, all the more so when you look at resort development in other countries, where you have resorts for all tastes and budgets. I ask you to pay particular attention to this issue.
Alexander Tkachev: Yes. As far as agriculture goes, I can report that this year the region has achieved its biggest harvest ever with a result of 58 quintals per hectare. This is a historical record and we and the whole country should be proud of this result.
We have already harvested 9 million tons of grain this year. I want to add that we expect just as high a result for harvests of industrial and technical crops. We have unprecedented harvests of corn, sunflowers, beetroot and soya this year, that is to say, all the crops used to make animal feed, which will help to develop the livestock industry in our region and other parts of the country.
Dmitry Medvedev: What has made such a good harvest possible?
Alexander Tkachev: Above all it is the fact that we have learned to use intensive world-standard European technology and are making use of new equipment, managerial expertise and specialists. State support has also played an important part. Many projects have been carried out within the framework of the national projects and have received state support. These two elements have made it possible to achieve this record. I think the region will be able to maintain results at not less than 50 quintals per hectare now.
Dmitry Medvedev: That is the most important thing, because each year is different and we all realise that much, but not all, depends on nature. The intensive technology we have been introducing in Russia over these last years is the guarantee that our country will be able to achieve good harvests no matter what the weather conditions.