7 august 2012

Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev meets with Novosibirsk Region Governor Vasily Yurchenko

The meeting was held at the Centre for Technological Support of the Novosibirsk Academic Town Technology Park. Mr Medvedev and Mr Yurchenko discussed the development of technoparks, among other issues.

Transcript of the beginning of the meeting:

Dmitry Medvedev: Mr Yurchenko, we are in a good place and, to be honest, after taking a walk I like it much better than when I first entered. Well, I thought it was just another technopark and I’ve seen many of them. It would seem we have enough of them but far from all of them have achieved such success. What I liked most of all is the package of ideas on how to establish a business. What we have just seen is truly impressive. This is very interesting and very different from what we have, because this is a different business model and an entirely different package of solutions. As I see it, this is just the middle of the process, or probably even the beginning.

Vasily Yurchenko: Yes, this is the beginning.

Dmitry Medvedev: Yes, this is the first stage. I understand you are waiting for new investors. How many residents are in this technopark today?

Vasily Yurchenko: It already has 200 residents. In 2011 they produced more than 10 billion roubles worth of products that were sold. This is great progress considering that this building was launched in 2010. This is the first building of the Centre for Technological Support.

Dmitry Medvedev: Well, what I really liked is that any contractor can order whatever he wants without worrying that if he orders less than a thousand, the order won’t be accepted and he will be turned down. So, small consignments and even individual pieces are also worth making on par with bigger ones. This is the difference between a high-tech economy and the one we have had for the last 80 years, so I hope you will stick to this model.

Vasily Yurchenko: Mr Medvedev, we put this model into the foundation of the technopark’s ideology. It is not so difficult to make a building…

Dmitry Medvedev: Yes, this is what we can do.

Vasily Yurchenko: Losing ideology is a different matter… We established the technopark as an open joint-stock company from the very start. The region owns 99% of shares but it is run by independent directors.

Dmitry Medvedev: Will you reduce the region’s share eventually?

Vasily Yurchenko: Yes. If a private investor comes we’ll be happy to reduce the share, because this is a heavy burden on our budget – in three years we’ve invested 3.9 billion roubles in it. At first we had to build the infrastructure because the Academic Town (Akademgorodok) did not have the technical conditions necessary to supply the technopark with water or electricity or to provide it with a sewage system. This was the first thing we did. And second, we built these facilities. But the main thing, as you have rightly noted, is the underlying model. We have a good team here – they have experience both in science and business…

Dmitry Medvedev: I was going to mention this. Of course, Akademgorodok is very famous. Many outstanding scientists work in its academic institutions and some of them are involved in great projects. I hope you will succeed in combining major fundamental science with applied science and even the academic component, in using this new model, attracting young specialists from the Academy of Science and giving Akademgorodok a second wind. This will benefit science and your entire region.

Vasily Yurchenko: Mr Medvedev, this is why we decided to establish our technopark on this territory… If you recall, you made a decision to allocate two plots of land where the technopark is now located from the property of the Academy of Science (they renounced this land). We spent two years developing it because of the environment…

Dmitry Medvedev: Of course!

Vasily Yurchenko: We certainly could have found the place in another part of the city but…

Dmitry Medvedev: But you don’t need to, do you? You have Akademgorodok. If you did not have it…

Vasily Yurchenko: It is the combination of the Siberian Branch, young specialists, this infrastructure and the environment that has allowed us to produce such results.

Dmitry Medvedev: All I can do is wish you success because everything looks very interesting.


* * *

Before speaking with the governor, Dmitry Medvedev visited the Centre for Technological Support of the Novosibirsk Academic Town Technology Park.