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18 April 201917:51

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks during the presentation of the Novgorod Region, Moscow, April 18, 2019

819-18-04-2019

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Mr Nikitin, ladies and gentlemen, colleagues, friends,

I’m pleased to welcome you to this presentation. We regularly hold presentations in conjunction with the Russian regions. Today, we present the Novgorod Region.

I am pleased to welcome representatives from the federal and regional authorities, the diplomatic corps, Russian and foreign business circles and our colleagues from the media.

The development and strengthening of ancient Rus as a state is closely related to the Novgorod land. Prince Rurik, the founder of Russia’s first ruling dynasty, and Prince Alexander Nevsky ranked by the Russian Orthodox Church among saints, ruled here. The legendary trade route “from the Varangians to the Greeks” passed through this region.

Thanks to its geographical location, significant industrial and scientific potential, the Novgorod Region has established itself as a dynamically developing Russian region. For several years now, growth rates have been positive, and the trend is steady.

Key industries include chemicals, food processing, woodworking, mechanical engineering and metallurgy. Companies like Akron that is among the world's leading producers of mineral fertilisers, successfully operate in the region. You can see their stand at the exhibit here. I would also like to mention Borovichi Refractories Plant which is Russia's largest plant of this type. Governor Andrey Nikitin and other regional representatives will tell you more about this later.

Notably, the efforts of the Novgorod Region government to improve its investment appeal and create favourable conditions for doing business, including for small- and medium-sized businesses, were duly recognised. This is corroborated by the data provided by the Agency for Strategic Initiatives. The priority socioeconomic development area Uglovka with its preferential tax incentives, a business incubator, an industrial park and a technology park have been launched and are operating successfully.

The Novgorod Region is a major transport hub. The region is connected by rail and road to the main cities of European Russia, Belarus and the Baltic states. Three federal motorways, including Rossiya Motorway between Moscow and St Petersburg, pass through the territory. The region also has important shipping routes.

International and foreign economic relations are being strengthened. Companies from the Nordic countries are working productively in the region. Contacts are being established with partners from other regions of the world, including Asia and the American continent. The legal foundation for cooperation is being improved. Representatives from the region take part in various international events and economic forums and do a good job of representing their land and Russia in general.

The Novgorod Region boasts large tourism and natural recreational potential. Veliky Novgorod is among Russia’s oldest cities. Over 5,000 monuments of culture and architecture are located here, many of which are on the UNESCO World Heritage List. The Novgorod Kremlin with its Cathedral of St Sophia, which is one of the oldest churches in Russia, is a popular tourist attraction. The Vitoslavlitsy National Wooden Architecture Museum is also very popular with tourists.

The Rdeysky State Nature Reserve and the Valdaysky National Park are well known. A modern world-class sports infrastructure is being developed in the region. I’m talking, in particular, about the Rowing Slalom Centre in Okulovka, where our national team in this sport comes for training.

The Novgorod Region is the birthplace of many prominent Russians, such as composer Sergey Rakhmaninov, painters Andrey Matveyev and Vasily Tropinin, anthropologist and traveler Nikolay Miklukho-Maklay, monumentalist Nikolay Tomsky and hockey player Valery Vasilyev.

I am sure that everyone here at today's presentation will get the chance to learn more about the significant economic and investment potential of this region, its rich history, culture and traditions.

In closing, I would like to wish good health, well-being and new successes to Governor Nikitin, the Novgorod government officials and all residents of the Novgorod Region, and productive work to the participants.

Thank you.

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