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Main | Archive | Issue 6/2008

Stanislas de Laboulaye
Column: Kaluga Phenomenon

Stanislas de Laboulaye, Ambassador of France to Russia, granted Diplomat magazine an interview.

Our trade and economic ties with the Kaluga Region are developing rapidly and are accompanied by sizable investments that demonstrate the exceptional attractiveness of this region neighboring Moscow to French entrepreneurs. The region authorities do much to promote the regions development. One way they do it is by holding investment forums in Kaluga every year. This activity yields concrete and tangible results in the employment sector as well.

On June 10, 2008, I look forward to leaving for Kaluga to take part in laying the foundation for a PSA Peugeot Citroen plant. The building of the enterprise in which 500 million has been invested will create about 3,000 new jobs. The plant is to annually put out 300,000 cars, including four wheel drive vehicles, which will be made in cooperation with the Japanese Mitsubishi company. The output will account for 7 - 8 percent of the Russian market. The figures speak for themselves: these are substantial investments, and the Kaluga Region government was instrumental in selecting the plant construction site.

Last fall, yet another major investment project began being implemented in Kaluga, namely, the construction of a truck plant, Volvo and Renault Trucks, which will put out roughly 15,000 trucks a year. French investments in Kaluga are not restricted to the car industry alone : the Lafarge Group is currently building a cement plant with an initial capacity of two million tons of cement a year, the Sucden Group is making hothouses for growing roses, and finally, the Accor Group has recently signed an agreement to build a hotel in the future district City Park Kaluga. These investment projects lay a lasting foundation on which we will be able to widen the French presence to agriculture and perfumery.

I want to add that we have also established fairly interesting cooperation in land survey policy. In April this year, we held a seminar on the Creation of an Infrastructure Model of Spatial Data for a Property Cadaster in the Kaluga Region. I am also very pleased that the Kaluga Region has been cooperating with the council of the Limousin Region since 2004. The cooperation of the local authorities is important for establishing contacts between people. In November 2008, we will hold a discussion in Moscow of issues related to the cooperation of the local authorities. This event will involve many Russian and French regions. And, of course, we hope to see our friends from Kaluga there.

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