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Meeting with Kamchatka Territory Governor Vladimir Solodov

September 5, 2022, Kamchatka Territory

Vladimir Putin held a working meeting with Kamchatka Territory Governor Vladimir Solodov to discuss the socioeconomic situation in that region.

The President began by noting that the situation in the region had improved under Governor Solodov. Industrial output is up, the unemployment rate is much lower than the national average, and agricultural production is making strides. The key benchmarks are indicative of the overall stabilization of the situation, and there is even a population influx. However, there are matters that need attention from the governor and the federal authorities.

Vladimir Solodov reported on the most important basic socioeconomic indicators noting, in particular, that construction was up 2.5 times compared to last year due to large infrastructure projects.

A new airport building is under construction and will be completed in 2024. This major project is being privately funded with major support from the federal budget. The Kamchatka Territory Hospital is being built under presidential instructions. A new school in central Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky will open to young people in several weeks to provide premed education in cooperation with Sechenov State University. Kindergartens are under construction. The governor noted that not a single enterprise in the region had closed because of the sanctions. Moreover, the region is doing quite well in terms of employment.

At the same time, the governor highlighted the issue of what is known as northern benefits. Since the Soviet era, there have been certain benefits for residents of the far North and the territories equated with it, such as the Kamchatka Territory. However, small businesses are not in a position to cope with the burden of providing these benefits in full, so the governor suggested supporting small enterprises in order to maintain these benefits for their employees. The President was clear that he would instruct the Government to work on this proposal.

Vladimir Solodov then raised the issue of excessive co-financing from the territorial budget when it comes to building social facilities. The President promised to look at this issue.

The governor also mentioned internet accessibility, particularly reliability, since Kamchatka and neighbouring Chukotka rely on one submerged cable line from Sakhalin for online access. Should the cable be damaged, the entire territory would be cut off from the internet given that repairing the cable could take up to a month, which is a major violation of life support processes. Internet services were not available for six hours recently due to a damaged overland cable, but breakdowns are possible under water as well. Solodov proposed building a triangular network to include Kamchatka and Magadan, which is connected with Sakhalin as well. That way, Kamchatka, Chukotka, and Magadan will have reliable online access. Vladimir Putin agreed that it was a matter of high importance.

They also discussed investment in the fishing industry and supporting small- and medium-sized fishing companies.

September 5, 2022, Kamchatka Territory