Ilsur Metshin: “Investors should not just be given a green light, we must help them until the start of projects”
Photo by Denis Gordiyko
(KZN.RU, March 4, Ksenia Shvetsova). Today at the Business Monday, Ilsur Metshin, the Mayor of Kazan, ordered to compile a list of projects proposed for implementation in Kazan under a public-private partnership scheme and instructed each investor to implement them. The head of the city said about the need to create a roadmap for each project, the implementation of which is possible in the framework of a public-private partnership.
Today, municipalities are practically competing for a private investor, noted Artur Valiakhmetov, the chairman of the Committee for Economic Development. Investors choose places with the most comfortable conditions for doing business, so further development of the public-private and municipal-private partnerships is necessary.
Now the main form of implementation of such projects in Kazan is a concession. The agreement provides the absence of expenses for the maintenance of buildings in addition to solving social problems and concession fees to the city budget, explained A. Valiakhmetov. Thus, an inter-district center for ambulatory blood hemodialysis was established in Kazan in the framework of concession agreements, a reconstruction of the landfill for chemical waste was carried out, and a hydraulic engineering structure “Fedoseevskaya Dam”, was reconstructed.
An important aspect of the implementation of PPP projects is a social component. For example, the increase in the construction of new sports facilities led to an increase in the proportion of the population that is systematically involved in sports (to 45%). “Even now, there are places with a shortage of sports grounds”, said A. Valiakhmetov. He added that at the moment, there are a number of PPP projects offered by private investors in the field of sports that could reduce this deficiency. The construction of sports and recreation complexes, small indoor football arenas are among such projects.
In addition, thanks to a PPP, Kazan made a big step towards solving social problems in the field of education. The right of gratuitous use of municipal property when creating private kindergartens was implemented. “This has made it possible to reduce the shortage of available places and open 5 new kindergartens”, said the speaker.
In the health sector, there are also proposals for the implementation of projects on PPP schemes. For example, the establishment of a rehabilitation center in the field of traumatology, cardio and neurorehabilitation is proposed. Kazan already has experience in implementing major investment projects in the healthcare sector, said the speaker. “A vivid example is the Republican Center for Family Planning and Reproduction “Ava Kazan”. The project was implemented by a St. Petersburg company, it’s their first project”, said the chairman of the Committee for Economic Development. He also added that last year, a private investor approached the Committee with a proposal to create a network of health and recreation centers “Votkinskie termy” in the framework of PPP. The project involves the opening of various types of bath-houses, conducting water and preventive procedures. “The implementation of this project would satisfy the needs of citizens in private bath-houses. At the same time, the agreement provides the free preferential services to low-income groups of the population”, said A. Valiakhmetov. He added that the selection of municipal and private land plots for the implementation of this project is carried out.
The variety of PPPs includes the program of preferential rent for small and medium-sized businesses implemented in Kazan. The city conducted an audit of unused vacant municipal premises. As a result, the business was offered 105 premises on preferential terms for a period of 5 years. According to A. Valiakhmetov, the business is already operating in most of these facilities today. For example, a service center, shoe repair, atelier, several hostels, and other organizations have been created.
One of the promising areas of implementation of PPP projects is the municipal infrastructure. Agreements in this area would improve the quality of public services with limited budgetary funds, said the speaker. The investors have already received their first requests for the implementation of PPP projects in the field of separate collection and processing of municipal solid waste. Earlier during the XXXII session of the Kazan City Duma, Ilsur Metshin, the Mayor of Kazan, made a proposal to organize a pilot project in Kazan to support small and medium-sized businesses, whose representatives will be engaged in waste management.
“The most important problem in the implementation of PPP projects in Kazan is the lack of a formed list of municipal land plots and property objects that can be offered to potential investors under public-private partnership”, said the speaker. He proposed to conduct an audit of municipal lands and property to compile a list of unused objects that can be formed for the implementation of projects, including in PPP.
“Russian legislation treats PPP rather narrow, with an objectively complex implementation mechanism. Often, the municipality does not have the authority to conclude agreements in some industries. The work is possible only through the republic”, explained A. Valiakhmetov.
“The lack of a legislative opportunity for municipalities to work directly with investors is not the best excuse. We have a dialog and absolute understanding with our republican colleagues, who will help to solve any issue”, replied the Mayor of Kazan. “We can organize support for any investment project through the Investment Development Agency of the Republic, for example. We can even come up with a legislative initiative, I see no obstacles. This is definitely not the fifth wheel that interferes with our movement”.
According to Ilsur Metshin, only 5% of announced projects are being implemented today. The Mayor ordered to compile a list of all projects and proposals received from investors. “We need to write out all the offers, even the most extravagant ones. Today they seem unreal, but tomorrow, if we work together on this, we can overcome many issues in a public-private partnership”, said the Mayor. “We will return to this issue. By March 18, there should be a list of applications and investors' wishes for work in Kazan, which the Investment Development Agency of the Republic has. I want to appeal to everyone: if in terms of the volume of investment or implementation your projects are not fit to the IDA, go directly with proposals to the Committee for Economic Development”.
In the near future, it is necessary to draw up a roadmap for each of the proposed PPP projects for implementation in Kazan and assign a responsible leader to each, added the head of the city. “We have to help investors, walk along with them through all the way. It is necessary that the deadlines for the approval of permissive documents of all our colleagues, network organizations, are clearly observed. Investors should not just be given the green light, we must help them until the start of projects in the city”.
The task to strengthen the work on public-private partnership (PPP) was set by Rustam Minnikhanov, the President of the RT, during the reporting XXXII session of the Kazan City Duma. He urged all heads of departments of the republic and municipalities to pay attention to the proposals of entrepreneurs, and actively support them in the implementation of projects. “The message and the task are clear. The possibilities of the city and republican budget are one thing, and quite another thing when the possibilities of budgets and private investment are combined. This is a completely different result”, said I. Metshin.