Russia plans to attract Canadian investments in national economy
Russia plans to create conditions for a significant increase of the volume of Canadian investments in the national economy, and in particular in the domestic minerals’ industry.
This will be mainly due to the recent change of power in Canada and the arrival of Justin Trudeau to the post of prime-minister of the country, who declared his intention to normalize the Canadian-Russian relations already in the near future.
According to recent statements of Alexei Orel, director of the department of state policy and regulation of Geology and Subsoil Use of the Russian Ministry of Natural Resources, Russia is very interested in the Canadian investments in the development of its minerals’ base and invites Canadian investors to participate in the tenders for exploration and production of gold, nickel and other minerals in Russia, which are scheduled for the current year.
In addition to direct investments, as part of the plans of the Russian government is the attraction of Canadian investors for joint implementation of some large-scale investment projects, which are currently implemented in Russia, one of which involves the development of the Arctic shelf.
The main interest of Russia and Canada in Arctic may be related with the Lomonosov Ridge, an underwater ridge of continental crust in the Arctic Ocean, which spans 1800 km from the New Siberian Islands over the central part of the ocean to Ellesmere Island of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago and which, in addition to Russia, could be also considered as a sweet spot by at least Denmark.
Several years ago Russia had already proposed Canada to start joint development of some sites of the Arctic shelf, however, due to the beginning of sanctions’ war between Russia and West, these plans were never implemented.
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In addition to oil and gas production, the parties are working on the improvement of transport connections in the Arctic regions. As part of these plans is the launch of cross-polar air routes between Russia’s Krasnoyarsk and Winnipeg, as well as maritime route, which is known as Arctic bridge” and which should link Russia’s Murmansk and the Canadian Churchill.
At the same time there is a possibility that the partners may start more active cooperation in the field of nuclear, and in particular uranium production. Currently Russia is interested in Canadian technologies for uranium production, that can be used for the development of some largest Russian uranium fields.
In addition, a particular interest of Russia is related with the purchases of Canadian agricultural machinery and equipment, as well as its breeding stock.
At present the volume of mutual trade between Russia and Canada is varied in the range of US$2.3-2.5 billion and there is a possibility that it may significantly increase during the next several years, as the countries have big potential for the further development of mutual trade, as Canada currently ranks only the 66th in terms of exports and only the 32th in terms of imports among the Russian trade partners.
At present the volume of accumulated direct Canadian investments in the Russian economy is estimated at about US$1.5 billion, while the value of assets, acquired by Russian companies in Canada, according to expert estimates, is about US$7 billion.
Eugene Gerden is an international free-lance writer, based in St. Petersburg, who specializes on writing in the field of mining, metals and rare earth metals. ... <Read more about Eugene Gerden>