France to contribute one billion euros to North Caucasian resorts joint venture.

15/7 Tass 355

MAKHACHKALA, July 15 (Itar-Tass) —— France will contribute one billion euros to the joint venture developing North Caucasian resorts of Russia, Economic Development Minister Elvira Nabiullina said at a Friday meeting on the North Caucasian tourist cluster.

“That is a very weighty contribution. Hopefully, the joint venture will be a locomotive of the project,” she said. Nabiullina expects the joint venture to be formed before the end of this year.

The North Caucasian tourist cluster will become a good example of public-private partnership, she said. “Private capital can and must come to the tourist industry,” she added.

A decision to form the Russian-French joint venture developing North Caucasian resorts before the end of this year was made a week ago at a meeting of the bilateral working group of the North Caucasian Resorts State Corporation and the French State Holding Caisse des Depots et Consignations (CDS).

“The sides confirmed their intention to choose the organizational and legal form of the joint venture and its key areas by September 2011. The joint venture will be formed by the end of this year,” a source at the North Caucasian Resorts Corporation told Itar-Tass. The permanent representative of the French company has started working in Russia, he noted.

French and Russian specialists will visit the North Caucasus soon for studying the sites of prospective resorts.

France is broadening the sphere of investment interest and declaring the wish to consider investments in the Caspian coastal cluster together with alpine resorts.

The Russian corporation and CDS signed the cooperation agreement at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum on June 17. Presidents Dmitry Medvedev and Nicolas Sarkozy adopted a joint declaration on the development of the North Caucasus at the G8 Deauville summit earlier.

The construction of five alpine skiing resorts in the North Caucasus – Matlas in Dagestan, Mamison in North Ossetia, Arkhyz in Karachayevo-Cherkessia, Lagonaki in the Krasnodar territory and Adygeya and Elbrus in Kabardino-Balkaria – is a priority project of the federal authorities. The North Caucasian Resorts State Corporation was formed for implementing the project, and Akmed Bilalov was put in charge. The investments may reach one trillion rubles within ten years, and about 300,000 jobs will be created.

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