V.V. Putin’s opening address:
Some of you attended the United Russia’s conference in Khabarovsk yesterday, where we discussed plans for the Far East. Specifically, we discussed Vnesheconombank’s and other development institutions’ involvement in implementing investment projects in the region.
There are many interesting business ideas for the Far East, in particular for its fuel and energy sector, steelmaking, forestry and fishing industries. As I have already said, we plan to establish a Direct Investments Fund in the Far Eastern Federal District and the Baikal Region.
VEB’s participation in this Fund will make it possible to engage major financial institutions, funds and investment companies in cooperation. Today, we’ll discuss the Fund’s concept and proposals for its organizational structure. I would also like to note that yesterday Vnesheconombank signed an agreement on extending a three billion ruble loan to Dallesprom for building a deep timber-processing integrated plant in the city of Amursk in the Khabarovsk Territory.
We’ll also consider another project that is critical for the Far East, the reconstruction of the Knevichi airport. This project will be implemented as part of preparations for the APEC summit and the program to remake the image of Vladivostok.
A new modern passenger terminal’s commissioning would increase the airport’s capacity to four million people per year. After reconstruction, the airport’s runway will be able to operate almost all types of aircraft, both Russian and international. Vnesheconombank’s investment in the project will total four billion rubles, of which it has already provided 2.3 billion rubles in loans.
Today we’ll also hear out a report on the progress the Bank has made on its mortgage lending program. I’d like to emphasize that the program began nearly a year ago, and Vnesheconombank has already extended more than 4,000 mortgage credits worth some seven billion rubles, which account for about 30% of the credits received by Russian citizens to buy new housing.
I’d like to stress that as we expected the average interest rate – stands at 11% per annum. Moreover, the banks that obtained VEB’s credits have cancelled commissions for issuing credits. There are mortgage credits extended at lower interest rates. For example, Sberbank extends mortgage credits for several categories of employees at 9.5% per annum. There are also higher interest rates of 11%, 12% and even a bit higher. But the average interest rate stands between 11% and 11.5% per annum across the country. These are the target figures we set for this year. Not bad for a start. We can expect the amount of loans to increase significantly in 2011.
There are also proposals to expand Vnesheconombank’s involvement in housing program for the Bank to encourages not only mortgage lending but also accomplish a task of increasing housing construction.
To this end, Vnesheconombank could lend to commercial banks for them to fund projects aimed at building affordable economy-class housing. As we agreed before, this investment is to amount to 50 billion rubles, and the funding source is to be Vnesheconombank’s profits from transactions in financial markets. I’d like to remind you that the Bank generated significant profits from the increased value of Russian companies’ shares, which it bought during the crisis. And it makes sense to invest these profits in implementing housing programs. Credits will be extended at only 3%, which will allow banks to reduce interest rates for end borrowers, that is, natural persons. VEB will soon begin to finance regional and municipal projects to upgrade utilities infrastructure. The Bank will use public-private partnership mechanisms to modernize water and heat supply systems, municipal transport and other facilities. The Bank will commit two billion rubles for these purposes annually. And one more point: this year Vnesheconombank has raised more than $5 billion for a period of up to 15 years in the international market. It is the first time that a Russian lending institution has raised funds on such favorable terms. The Bank has also successfully placed ruble-denominated bonds worth 25 billion rubles. This testifies to the increased trust in Russian banks and shows that Vnesheconombank’s team is comprised of real professionals.
Let’s start our discussion.
V.V. Putin’s Opening Address
Today, we are holding our regular meeting of Vnesheconombank’s Supervisory Board. Our today’s agenda includes a number of new investment projects as well as issues of systemic nature such as for example the creation of effective instruments for implementing socio-economic plans. Here I mean the plans to develop the Northern Caucasus. We set ourselves a number of objectives in the Strategy for the Northern Caucasus, the Northern-Caucasian Federal District. The main one is to secure the development of this Russian region. We have to address the issues of transport, power engineering, we also have to upgrade populated localities but the main thing is to create 400 thousand new jobs for a period of 10 years.
To this end, huge government and private funds worth tens and even hundreds of billions rubles should be invested in the Northern Caucasus. In order to accomplish objectives of such magnitude we have to use advanced management systems in the top-priority economic sectors. Today, we’ll discuss proposals on some key elements.
Here I mean the Northern Caucasus Development Corporation and a company “Resorts of the Northern Caucasus”. Vnesheconombank is to found both these business entities. And in their operation they will rely on the Bank’s financial and expert potential.
The Northern Caucasus Development Corporation is to be responsible for monitoring investment projects - from idea to practical implementation. It is this Corporation, which should be responsible for preparing all required documentation, agreeing it upon with regional, local and federal authorities as well as for helping to obtain credits in financial institutions. Moreover, the Corporation’s most important task is to train local personnel, specialists so that they will be able to work in the modern conditions and raise investments on their own.
The company “Resorts of the Northern Caucasus” is to be established in order to manage a unified tourist complex that is being formed in the region now. Here I mean such resorts as Arkhyz in Karachaevo-Cherkessia, Lagi-Naki in Adygeya, Mamison in North Ossetia, Matlas in Dagestan and Elbrus in Kabardino-Balkaria.
I’d like to highlight two more issues. Firstly, Vnesheconombank is planning to participate in implementing a project aimed at developing Russia supercomputers manufacturing technologies and promoting their export. These technologies will be in great demand in power engineering, aviation, space exploration, nuclear power engineering and in many other economic sectors. And secondly, it’s a project to build a large stock-breeding complex in the Bryansk region.
We are well aware that this year the situation in the agro-industrial complex is quite difficult. Because of the drought, agro-industrial farms in a number of regions suffered heavy losses and are in need of the state’s support .We have already talked about it today. This sort of support is being provided now.
At the same time, we can see that many investors took a decision not to freeze their projects and continue to work for the future and build high-technology, large-scale production facilities, above all, in animal breeding, plant growing and logistics.
And we, of course, should back this approach. And we are going to deal with one of these projects. Here I mean Miratorg Company. A meat cattle-breeding complex for 100 thousand heads is planned to be built. This sort of production facilities have never been built in our country, even, if my memory serves me right, in the Soviet times. This complex would produce up to 48 thousand tons of beef a year.
A total amount of financing is in excess of 24 billion rubles, with Vnesheconombank’s participation share being 18.4 billion rubles.
Let’s get started with our work
On Decisions by Vnesheconombank’s Supervisory Board
VEB Enters into Capital of a Company Involved in Developing Supercomputers
Moscow, September 30, RIA Novosti. Vnesheconombank made a decision to enter into capital of T-Platforms Company, which is engaged in developing supercomputer technologies and services, Vnesheconombank Chairman Vladimir Dmitriev told journalists about it on Thursday.
VEB’s Supervisory Board spoke in favor of the project aimed at increasing capacities and entering international markets of Russia’s company engaged in developing supercomputers. This involves both software and design of computers. T-Platforms Company is a pretty well-known company both on the international and Russian market, said Mr. Dmitriev at a briefing after Vnesheconombank’s Supervisory Board meeting.
“We are entering into this company’s capital having a clear idea of withdrawing from the capital. This would allow the company to start serious production in Russia and strengthen its positions abroad”, added VEB’s Chairman.
He reminded that the Company participated in developing the Lomonosov supercomputer.
T-Platforms Company is the largest Russian holding involved in high-speed computations. The Group of companies provides a full range of solutions and services in supercomputer technologies and resource-intensive computations. Six systems developed by the Company were included in the rating of the most powerful supercomputers Top500.
Charter Capital of the Northern Caucasus Development Corporation to Amount to 500 million Rubles
MOSCOW, September 30. /PRIME-TASS/. Charter capital of the Northern Caucasus Development Corporation is to amount to 500 million rubles. Vnesheconombank Chairman Vladimir Dmitriev told journalists about it.
He said that Vnesheconombank would act as the Corporation’s founder. He added that he hoped that other investors and banks would be among founders and shareholders of the Corporation as well.
The Corporation’s task will be to monitor investment projects to be implemented on the territory of the Northern Caucasus and to consult regional authorities. The Corporation is expected to start operating as early as in November of 2010.
According to Dmitriev, original 500 million rubles to be invested in the Development Corporation’s charter capital will be enough to finance projects worth up to 9 billion rubles.
He added that earlier it had been said that the total amount of funds needed for implementing investment projects offered to be submitted for consideration by a would-be Development Corporation would be 2-3 trillion rubles. V.Dmitriev said that he was sceptical about most of these projects. In his opinion, even half of them are unlikely to be prepared properly in terms of bank risks and return on investment.
VEB and Sberbank to Invest 300 million rubles each in the Project “Resorts of the Northern Caucasus”
MOSCOW, Sept 30 – RIA Novosti. Vnesheconombank and Sberbank are to invest 300 million rubles each in the project “Resorts of the Northern Caucasus”. The project provides for creating five mountain-ski resorts in the region. Another 6 billion rubles are to be invested by OJSC Special Economic Zones, Vnesheconombank Chairman Vladimir Dmitriev said on Thursday.
“We have agreed with Sberbank that Vnesheconombank and Sberbank would invest 300 million dollars each in this company (OJSC Resorts of the Northern Caucasus), to my best knowledge OJSC Special Economic Zones would invest funds in the amount of 6 billion rubles”, Mr. Dmitriev said at a briefing after VEB’s Supervisory Board meeting where they discussed an issue of VEB’s participation in the project.
According to him, this mechanism would be used to raise private investment for this region to finance infrastructure and other facilities.
OJSC “Resorts of the Northern Caucasus” is to be founded to manage a unified tourist complex, which is being formed in the region now. Under this project the following mountain ski resorts are to be built: Arkhyz in Karachaevo-Cherkessia, Lago-Naki in Adygeya, Mamison in North Ossetia, Matlas in Dagestan and Elbrus in Kabardino-Balkaria.
VEB to Invest 7 billion Rubles in Float Glass Manufacturing
MOSCOW, Sept 30 – RIA Novosti. Vnesheconombank is to invest more than 7 billion rubles in building a float glass manufacturing factory in Dagestan, said Vnesheconombank Chairman.
“We hope that in the most immediate future after a detailed comprehensive examination of all documents is completed, funds would be made available and the amount of funds is as much as 10 billion rules, with Vnesheconombank’s participation share being more than 7 billion rubles”, said Dmitriev at a briefing on Thursday.
According to him, an appropriate decision was made at VEB’s Supervisory Board meeting on Thursday.
He added that the said glass factory was to be built near Makhachkala and it would be equipped with state-of-the- art equipment. Private investments would amount to about 30%.
Moreover, Dagestan’s authorities are already rendering assistance in allocating a plot of land and in building an infrastructure. Dagestan’s float glass factory’s capacity is to be 600 tons per day. The project provides for building a new high-technology production facility of various types of glass capable of meeting the construction industry’s needs in the Northern Caucasian, Southern, Volga and Central Federal Districts, the Press Office of the Russian Government was quoted as saying.
The glass factory would manufacture top-quality innovative products having unique energy-saving qualities – a 30% percent reduction in thermal losses in a cold period of the year and a 30-45% solar energy reduction in a warm period of the year.
A manufacturing technology is to be provided under a license of the world’s largest manufacturer of new extra-thin glass coatings, PPG Industries (the U.S.).
The project’s implementation is expected to create 300 new jobs and increase tax revenues in the budgets of all levels.
VEB to Buy out Svyaz-Bank’s Problem Loans for an Amount of 80-90 Billion Rubles, to Pay 8-9 Billion Rubles for them
Moscow. September 30. INTERFAX-AFI – Vnesheconombank is to buy out Svyaz-Bank’s (RTS: SVZB) problem loans for an amount of 80-90 billion rubles, Vnesheconombank Chairman Vladimir Dmitriev told journalists about it.
“After buying out this part of debts the balance sheet would be cleaned out of bad loans”, said Dmitriev after VEB’s Supervisory Board meeting. At the same time V Dmitriev said that the appraised value of this portfolio of bad loans was about 8-9 billion rubles. The appraised value between 8 and 9 billion rubles accounts for about 10%”, said Dmitriev.
VEB’s Supervisory Board was informed about the progress of this project’s implementation. V.Dmitriev added that talks with partner-banks on establishing a Postal Bank are still underway. He also added that a partner was most likely to be chosen at least in a month’s time. He explained it by the fact that proposals submitted to VEB by partners on September 15 did not meet all the requirements. VEB’s Chairman added that they discussed with partner-banks such issues as to how they would compensate for the Post of Russia’s loss of incomes because of its refusal to conduct financial transactions and as to how to compensate for VEB’s expenses on reorganizing Svyaz-Bank.
VEB to Choose a Partner for Establishing a Postal Bank on the Basis of Svyaz-Bank at Least in a Month’s Time
MOSCOW, September 30. /PRIME-TASS/. Vnesheconombank is to choose a partner for establishing a Postal Bank on the basis of Svyaz-Bank at least in a month’s time.
According to him, Nomos-Bank or Bank Russian Standard can become VEB’s partner.
V.Dmitriev didn’t specify possible dates of establishing a Postal Bank saying that Svyaz-Bank’s re-branding into a Postal Bank could take place in parallel with talks on searching for a partner.
According to V.Dmitriev, Vnesheconomank expects its potential partners to submit proposals on how and when to compensate the Post of Russia’s loss of incomes because it is to transfer a number of its financial transactions to a Postal Bank. And of course we would like them to disclose their stand on compensating for Vnesheconombank’s expenses on reorganizing Svyaz-Bank through using the Central Bank’s deposit”, said V.Dmitriev.
According to him, they have discussed the progress of implementing decisions on reorganizing Svyaz-Bank at Vnesheconombank’s Supervisory Board meeting. They stated that the measures taken by Vnesheconombank by way of using the Central Bank’s deposit worth 125 billion rubles helped to improve Svyaz-Bank’s financial indicators and secure its sustainable development. “These measures yielded tangible positive results”, noted V.Dmitriev.
Since the beginning of the year, the Bank has increased its loan portfolio by more than 40 percent. The amount of raised funds increased by more than 40 percent. The bank’s equity capital is about 45 billion rubles with capital adequacy ratio being more than 43 percent. This is quite a positive indicator enabling the bank to increase its transactions”, said V.Dmitriev.
RusAl to Repay Credit Worth $4.5 Billion to VEB within a Few Hours
MOSCOW. September 30. INTERFAX-AFI – VEB Chairman Vladimir Dmitriev told journalists that RusAl would repay its credit worth $4.5 billion, which it raised from Vnesheconombank in autumn of 2008 in the nearest time.
“I think it’s a matter of several hours, funds are available to refinance the debt in full’, said Dmitriev.
RusAl is planning to refinance its debt to VEB through raising a credit from Russia’s Sberbank.
Earlier, Sberbank President German Gref said that the credit could be refinanced in September.
V.Dmitriev said that that a key provision of the transaction model agreed upon by the three parties was that under no circumstances the mining and smelting plant’s collateral (Nornickel’s blocking stake owned by RusAl and pledged against VEB’s credit) was not to be alienated from the state.
In early August it became known that that Sberbank approved extending a credit worth $4.5 billion to RusAl for a period of up to December 2013 to refinance its debt to VEB. The sum of the credit approved covers the current debt of the Aluminum Company and capitalized interest.
In November 2008, RusAl raised a credit worth $4.5 billion from VEB to repay a loan obtained in April of 2008 from a syndicate of Western banks to purchase 25% +2 shares of the Norilsk Nickel Mining and Smelting Company. Last autumn VEB rolled over the credit for another year – until October 29, 2010.
Vnesheconombank is ready to explore the possibility of participating in the INTECO project in the Rostov region.
MOSCOW, September 30. /ITAR-TASS/. Upon receiving sufficient documentation on the construction of integrated home-building factories in the Rostov region by the INTECO Company, Vnesheconombank is ready to explore the possibility of participating in this project. Vnesheconombank Chairman Vladimir Dmitriev told journalists about it.
According to him, VEB continues to examine the materials made available.”In order to get divorced one should first get married”, Dmitriev commented on a number of publications in the mass media that wrote that VEB had got divorced with INTECO and would not participate in this project.
“We are examining the project on a routine basis”, said Dmitriev. As soon as we receive enough materials to examine the Rostov project thoroughly we’ll study them and make a decision in accordance with the established procedures”.
VEB’s Supervisory Board approved a proposal for a new remuneration system in the state corporation
Moscow. September 30. INTERFAX-AFI – Vnesheconombank’s Supervisory Board approved a proposal for a new remuneration system in the state corporation, VEB Chairman Vladimir Dmitriev told journalists about it.
“We also made a decision to approve a proposal agreed upon with the key financial and economic authorities for a system of financial indicators which would form the basis for VEB’s remuneration system”, he said at a briefing after Vnesheconombank’s Supervisory Board meeting.
Moreover, the Bank’s Supervisory Board approved regulations on a personnel and remuneration committee.
“We are forming a full-fledged management structure in line with the international banking standards. This structure is designed to manage Vnesheconombank as a state corporation”, he added.
V.Dmitriev said that all these decisions had been made without any linkage to a possible transformation of VEB into a joint stock company.
According to him, VEB’s proposals for employee remuneration were made on the basis of indicators of the five largest banks with state participation.
VEB is to provide sponsorship of 360 million rubles to Russia’s national hockey team
MOSCOW, September 30 – RIA Novosti. Vnesheconombank is to provide sponsorship of 360 million rubles in this season to Russia’s national ice-hockey team, Vnesheconombank Chairman told journalists about it.
According to him, the decision was taken on Thursday at the Bank’s Supervisory Board meeting conducted by Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.
“Another decision I’d like to mention is the one on providing sponsorship of 360 million rubles to Russia’s national ice-hockey team. The funds are to be used to support the team in this season as well as to form the basis for our ice squad’s successful performance at the 2014 Winter Olympics”, said Dmitriev.