Russia hosted the seventh Eastern Economic Forum (EEF) Vladivostok recently.
Eastern Economic Forum
The Eastern Economic Forum was established in 2015 to support the economic development of Russia’s Far East and to expand international cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region.
The primary objective of the EEF is to increase the Foreign Direct Investments in the Russia’s Far East (RFE).
The Forum takes place each year in Vladivostok.
Key-issues: Every year, the Eastern Economic Forum serves as a platform for the discussion of key issues in the world economy, regional integration, and the development of new industrial and technological sectors, as well as of the global challenges facing Russia and other nations.
This year, the Forum aimed at connecting the Far East with the Asia Pacific region.
Major Actors in the Forum:
China is the biggest investor in the region as it sees potential in promoting the Chinese Belt and Road Initiative and the Polar Sea Route in the Russia’s Far East (RFE).
China and Russia have invested in a fund to develop north-eastern China and the RFE, through collaborations on connecting the cities of Blagoveshchensk and Heihe via a 1,080 metre bridge, supplying natural gas, and a rail bridge connecting the cities of Nizhneleninskoye and Tongjiang.
South Korea has also been gradually increasing its investments in the region.
South Korea has invested in shipbuilding projects, manufacturing of electrical equipment, gas-liquefying plants, agricultural production and fisheries.
In 2017, Japanese investments through 21 projects amounted to $16 billion.
Under Shinzo Abe’s leadership, Japan identified eight areas of economic cooperation and pushed private businesses to invest in the development of the RFE.
India is keen to deepen its cooperation in energy, pharmaceuticals, maritime connectivity, healthcare, tourism, the diamond industry and the Arctic.
In 2019, India also offered a $1 billion line of credit to develop infrastructure in the region.
Through the EEF, India aims to establish a strong inter-state interaction with Russia.
About the Far East:
The Far East is the easternmost part of Russia. The macro-region borders two oceans, the Pacific and the Arctic, and five countries (China, Japan, Mongolia, the United States and the DPRK).
The Far Eastern Federal District covers more than a third of the country’s territory.
Resources: The Far East is rich in natural resources like diamonds, stannary, borax materials, 50 gold, tungsten, and fish and seafood. About 1/3 of all coal reserves and hydro-engineering resources of the country are here. Forests of the region comprise about 30% of the total forest area of Russia.
Significant rivers include the Volga, Dnieper and Dvina (west), the Lena, Ob, and Yenisey (central) and the Amur in the far-east.