APEC Business Summit Begins In Shanghai

Russia's role in the Asia-Pacific region of the 21st century will be at the heart of the APEC business summit taking place in China's largest economic centre of Shanghai. Russian president Vladimir Putin will be speaking on the issue before the Asia-Pacific business elite. According to deputy head of the Kremlin administration Sergei Prikhodko, Russia is ready to contribute to the forum's activities in a bid to ensure sustained versatile economic development of the local countries. Moscow, in his words, sees good prospects in expanding energy cooperation /laying of gas and oil pipelines and constructing energy bridges with China, the Republic of Korea and Japan/, in the APEC countries using Russia's transport infrastructure /cross-polar airways from Asia to North America, Trans-Siberian railway, and the opportunities of the Far Eastern ports/, establishing investment, scientific, and technological cooperation, involving first of all Siberia and Russia's Far East. To quote the Kremlin spokesman, Russia hopes for active interaction with the APEC countries in these large-scale projects. In his words, the first steps to the effect are already being made. In particular, Sakhalin's oil and gas resources are being successfully developed with the help of some Asia-Pacific countries. Besides, Russia and China have recently agreed to launch preparations for constructing a main gas pipeline to deliver Siberian oil. Moscow attaches great importance to the events of the APEC forum on its territory. In May, the Russian capital hosted a session of the APEC business consultative council, and several APEC events are scheduled to be held in Russia next year. In an effort to improve cooperation with the APEC, a business club has been set up in Russia, comprising Russian entrepreneurs who operate in the Asia-Pacific region. Its members include over 50 major companies and banks, with the majority of them having arrived in Shanghai to attend the APEC business summit.

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