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Minister Assures City on Track for SPIEF

Published: April 30, 2014 (Issue # 1808)



  • Minister of Economic Development Alexei Ulyukayev addresses the media at SPIEFs Apr. 23 press conference.
    Photo: SPIEF

Alexei Ulyukayev, Chairman of the Organizing Committee and the Russian Minister of Economic Development, told assembled media members at a press conference on Apr. 23 that he remains convinced all preparations for the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, or SPIEF, in May will be ready. He also addressed the current political and economic atmosphere, acknowledging that it may influence the event.

During the conference, Ulyukayev emphasized that strengthening ties in the business world and fostering greater trust will be a key component of the event, echoing its stated theme, Sustaining Confidence in a World Undergoing Transformation.

Sergei Belyakov, Deputy Minister of Economic Development, and Anatoly Kotov, Chair of the St. Petersburg Committee for Economic Policy and Strategic Planning, also fielded questions about the citys preparations for the upcoming event.

The forum, which starts May 22, will welcome 142 senior executives from international businesses as well as 115 senior executives from Russian companies for three days of panels and roundtables. However, Ulyukayev emphasized that the forum is not meant to solve vital political issues but rather strengthen business ties.

There are certain risks, to the extent that we are holding the event not in a very favorable geopolitical environment, Ulyukayev said before adding, but weve been very attentive.

Despite frosty political relations between Russia and the West, Ulyukayev stated that the number of companies and participants that have confirmed their participation has in fact risen. During this point last year, 693 participants had confirmed their attendance, while this year, 734 companies have sent in confirmations. The number of senior executives attending has also increased from 2013, with 561 already confirmed.

Goldman Sachs, British Petroleum, CitiBank, Siemens and Hyundai are some of the confirmed foreign companies that will be in attendance this year. Individuals who will be present include Alisher Usmanov, General Director of Gazprom and Russias wealthiest man, Joe Kaeser, President and CEO of Siemens AG, Jon Fredrik Baksaas, CEO of Telenor Group, and Vagit Alekperov, President of Lukoil.

Three heads of government, four foreign ministers and five foreign cabinet members are slated to attend as well, although Ulyukayev was unable to provide any names at the time.

Although there will be no specific discussion about the Crimeas addition to the Russian Federation and how this may affect the economy, Ulyukayev admitted that it would likely be a topic brought up during discussions in the other events.

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ALL ABOUT TOWN

Thursday, Dec. 18


Improve your English and knowledge of British culture during todays FORM lesson at the British Book Center. These free English lessons with a native speaker elaborate not only on grammar particulars but cultural topics as well. Todays event will discuss the BBC Two documentary Victorian Farm Christmas.



Friday, Dec. 19


Test your mastery of parlor games during Game Evening at the British Book Center. Learn how to play a variety of classic, mentally challenging games and use your newly acquired skills to crush weaker opponents. The event beings at 5 p.m.



Saturday, Dec. 20


The citys Babushkina Park on Prospekt Obukhovskoy Oborony will be invaded by dozens of rocking-and-rolling Santa Clauses during todays Santa Claus Parade. Not only will they parade through the park but there will also be competitions amongst the festively-clad participants and a musical master class. There will also be a prize for the best-dressed Santa Claus.


Stock up your record collection during the Vinyl Christmas Sale at the KL10TCH bar on Konyushennaya ploschad today. Spend the afternoon perusing the records for sale while listening the classic, clean sound of records spinning out hits from a variety of musical genres and time periods.



Sunday, Dec. 21


TheZenit St. Petersburg basketball team returns to the northern capital this evening for a matchup with Krasny Oktyabr, a Volgograd-based basketball club. Tickets for the game, which tips off at 6 p.m. this evening, can be purchased on the clubs website or at their arena, Sibur Arena, on Krestovsky island.


Satisfy your sugar cravings during Sweet New Year, an ongoing seasonal festival at the Raduga shopping center. Each weekend of December will welcome hungry visitors to taste hundreds of different kinds of desserts made from a plethora of sweet treats. Workshops are open to visitors and seasonal gifts can also be purchased for those rushing to finish their New Year shopping.



Monday, Dec. 22


Pick out the latest fashions as holiday gifts for loved ones or as early presents for yourself during the Christmas Design Sale at Kraft on Obvodny Kanal, starting on Dec. 20 and continuing through Dec. 27. Designer clothes will be on sale every day of the week or you can buy something more festive to decorate the home while sipping on hot coffee and perusing the various master classes.



Tuesday, Dec. 23


Meet Arctic explorers Fedor Konukhov and Viktor Simonov during SPIBAs and Capital Legal Services event Arctic Expedition this morning in the Mertens House business center at 21 Nevsky Prospekt. The meeting will discuss the explorers ongoing eco-social project and how companies can use the project as a unique marketing opportunity. Email office@spiba.ru by Dec. 22 if you wish to attend.



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