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September 7, 2018

RUSSIAN - SYRIAN BUSINESS FORUM WITHIN THE FRAMEWORK OF THE 60TH DAMASCUS INTERNATIONAL FAIR.

The Russian-Arab Business Council and the company "ARABIA-EXPO" took part in the Russian-Syrian Business Forum, which was held on September 7, 2018, within the framework of the 60th Damascus International Fair.

The participants discussed investment opportunities, trade and tourism in Syria, which is especially important at the stage of reconstruction of the country.

The Syrian side also points out the importance of holding this forum during the Damascus International Fair, which, in particular, is dedicated to the development of Syrian-Russian cooperation and opens new avenues for trade and economic relations between the two countries in various spheres of industry, tourism, energy, service, construction.

A lot of Syrian and Russian entrepreneurs, representatives of government bodies and the diplomatic corps took part in the Russian-Syrian Business Forum.

Both sides view this forum as an opportunity to discuss the difficulties and problems that arise in the course of joint work, as well as possible ways to solve them.

The event was opened by a plenary session titled "Trade and Industrial Dialogue: Russia-Syria", moderated by Anna Belikova, chief specialist of the external communications service of Russia Today news agency.

The plenary session was addressed by:

Georgy Kalamanov, Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation;
Samer Khalil, Deputy Minister of Economy and Foreign Trade of the SAR;
Alexander Kinshchats, Ambassador of the Russian Federation in the SAR;
Hazem Karful, Deputy Chairman of the Central Bank of the SAR;
Vladimir Padalko, Vice President of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation;
Ghassan Al Qallaa, President of the Federation of the Syrian Chamber of Commerce;
Fares Shehabi, President of the Federation of the Syrian Chamber of Industry;
Samir Hassan, Chairman of the Syrian-Russian Business Council;
Louay Youssef, Executive Director of the Russian-Syrian Business Council;
Alexander Vedrov, Deputy General Director of JSC Concern VKO Almaz-Antey.

Speaking at the plenary session of the forum "Trade and Industrial Dialogue: Russia-Syria", Vladimir Padalko, Vice-President of the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, noted that this meeting is a confirmation of the firm intentions of Russian business not only to restore the former trade and economic cooperation between our countries but also to move forward.

A partner base has been formed, full-fledged contacts have been established between the Russian-Syrian and Syrian-Russian business councils. An authoritative Syrian businessman Ahmed Urfali was appointed an honorary representative of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Russia in Syria. Its tasks include advising Syrian companies on working with our country, assisting in the certification of products, assisting entrepreneurs in verifying and finding partners, as well as in resolving disputes.

At present, a good basis has been prepared for a more active transformation of contacts and preliminary agreements into a practical plane and transition to specific projects. All this coincides with the serious interest of Russian business in the reconstruction and construction of a production base in Syria, including the creation of turnkey large enterprises in various industries.

An important role in resolving most issues related to the work of Russian entrepreneurs on the Syrian market should be played by the "road map" for the development of trade and industrial cooperation for the period 2018-2020. It can be an effective tool for monitoring the implementation of priority Russian-Syrian projects. At the same time, to promote Russian business to the Syrian market, it is necessary to better work out the mechanisms for mutual settlements and determine the guaranteed sources of financing for projects.

At present, a good basis has been prepared for a more active transformation of contacts and preliminary agreements into a practical plane and transition to specific projects. All this coincides with the serious interest of Russian business in the reconstruction and construction of a production base in Syria, including the creation of turnkey large enterprises in various industries.

An important role in resolving most issues related to the work of Russian entrepreneurs on the Syrian market should be played by the "road map" for the development of trade and industrial cooperation for the period 2018-2020. It can be an effective tool for monitoring the implementation of priority Russian-Syrian projects. At the same time, to promote Russian business to the Syrian market, it is necessary to better work out the mechanisms for mutual settlements and determine the guaranteed sources of financing for projects.

Russia and Syria have long-standing business ties, hundreds and thousands of implemented projects, and this is a good basis for further work. Within the framework of the forum, three "round tables" are held on the main areas of cooperation - from industry and agriculture to communication and logistics.

In each sphere there is a huge front of work, ahead there are a lot of projects that are to be realized together, the Forum participants noted.

After a short break, the Forum participants continued their work within the framework of the sessions of the three thematic round tables:

1) "Industry. Power engineering. Personnel training".

Moderators of the meeting: Zuhair Khzayem, General Manager, State Organization for Military Development; Dmitry Nikitin, Deputy Director of the Machine-Building and Investment Machinery Department of the Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation.

2) "Agro-industrial complex. Manufacture of agricultural machinery and equipment for the food industry. Trade"

Session Moderators: Samir Hassan, Chairman of the Syrian-Russian Business Council; Vladimir Padalko, Vice-President of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation.

3) "Transport, communications and telecommunications"

Luay Barakat, Director of the Syrian Road and Bridge Construction Company; Sergei Litvinov, Deputy Head of the Department of the Radioelectronic Industry, Ministry of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation.

Recall that at the last meeting of the Damascus International Fair, which took place after a five-year hiatus, 43 countries took part, of which 23 officially passed through the embassies, while the other 20 registered trade partnerships and independent economic companies.

Damascus International Fair is one of the oldest and largest exhibitions in the Middle East. This is one of the main events in the exhibition life of the republic. It is at this fair that business contacts are made between leading Syrian industrial, trade, service companies and organizations with their foreign partners.

A memorandum of understanding between the Russian-Syrian and Syrian-Russian business councils was signed at the forum, which aims to achieve practical results in the development of trade and economic relations between the two countries.

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