The GMIS-2019 is about to take off on July, 9. The summit is a joint venue of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and the United Arab Emirates. Russia provides great opportunities for the development of industry and high technology. The UNIDO head Li Yong has repeatedly given positive assessments of the close cooperation of the international organization and Russia. The cooperation includes Russia’s support of participation in large-scale industrialization programs in developing countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America, which contribute to a positive image in these regions. Besides, Russia also provides industrial development and maintenance projects in Armenia, Belarus, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. The signing of a cooperation agreement with the Eurasian Economic Commission and the provision of platforms for the St. Petersburg International Forum and GMIS-2019 were also noted by the UNIDO head as appositive move. In addition, the approaches of Russia and UNIDO to the solution of the socio-economic problems today are very common. The summit provides an opportunity to use all the necessary potential of the participating countries to expand cooperation with each other. The geographical location of Ekaterinburg on the border of Europe and Asia contributes to the development of economic relations of European entrepreneurs with partners from China, Japan and other Asian countries. The examples of the World Cup games in 2018 and the international industrial exhibition INNOPROM emphasize the availability of infrastructure facilities in the city for hosting major international events and accommodate up to 40,000 tourists per day. The organizer of the summit is preparing an exhibition of 100 startups, which includes the most promising sectors – the drivers of growth of the world economy and the Fourth Industrial Revolution. The willingness of international representatives to take part in the summit testifies their attitude towards Russia as a reliable trade and economic partner, which fulfills its obligations, despite US attempts to isolate Russia from the system of international relations.
St. Petersburg International Economic Forum is about to take off in less than two weeks.
The Forum will host more than 120 events, including two plenary sessions, panel sessions, round tables, business breakfasts and TV debates, the Roskongress Foundation, the organizing committee of the forum, reports.
“According to the official website of SPIEF – 2019 there is a business program with speakers and moderators of discussions. The forum will take place on June 6–8, 2019. The main theme is “Forming grounds for sustainable development,” the message says. The program consists of four thematic blocks: “The World Economy in Search of Balance”, “The Russian Economy: Realizing the Goals of National Development”, “Technologies Approaching the Future”, “People are the top priority”.
“The business program of SPIEF-2019 is attended by representatives of the government, public organizations, and leaders of the business community. This year we will talk a lot about economic development and strengthening multilateral mutually beneficial cooperation between countries, including the role of Russia in the international arena, ”said Anton Kobyakov, Adviser to the President of the Russian Federation, Executive Secretary of the SPIEF Organizing Committee.
The US recent claims to withdraw its troops from the North-Eastern provinces of Syria and the official vows of pausing collaboration with Syrian Kurds are widely regarded as an effort of Washington to build closer relations with Ankara. However, while pursuing this policy, the Pentagon and the CIA continue expanding communication channels with Syrian Kurds in case if Ankara’s political compass is navigated towards Russia rather than the US after Turkey elections in June 2018.
The United States has also encouraged its partners, members of the Anti-Terrorism Coalition to send more of their troops to the so-called Syrian Kurdistan, a territory located north-east of the Euphrates. As a result, Germany and France, along with increasing numbers of their military troops in this region, have also been given authority to provide support to Kurdish military troops in Syria. Given how sensitive the Kurdish issue is for Iraq, Iran, Turkey and Syria this will, beyond any doubts, cause further tension between the EU and the Middle Eastern countries and will let the US avoid any possible accusations of the international law violations amid the Syria war.
With ambitious plans in Syria that included the stabilization of the country, getting rid of Bashar al-Assad, knocking out Iranian influence, fighting ISIS and becoming a hero who brought an end to the seven-year Syrian war the US did not seem (and perhaps still does not seem) to care that its new policy might cause much bigger conflicts in the region and go far beyond defeating ISIS only. Similar to the EU migration crisis, the US acts as an invisible mediator while the EU takes all the fire. This time, Washington’s goals of aggravating the further conflict between the EU countries and the Middle East are rather economical: Washington tries to undermine the EU investment opportunities and provoke further financial crisis in Europe.
With the current political regime and the policy that contradicts to the Ukraine’s national identity the country seems to be once again on the brink of a religious war. The conflict that started last year between the Ukraine’s Institute of Church and the national Parliament, The Verkhovna Rada, is getting to the new extreme today.
A number of Ukrainian politicians representing the political party “Svoboda” along with some members of the Rada have requested the Ukraine’s Ministry of culture for religious affairs to change the official name of the Ukrainian Orthodox church for the “Russian Orthodox Church in Ukraine” claiming that Moscow had “grabbed” the Ukrainian national shrines. The move is allegedly explained by the growing Russian “aggression” in the Crimea and the Ukrainian region of Donbass.
According to experts from the Ukrainian Analytical Institute for policy management, the claims should be regarded as a typical blackmail policy aiming to undermine Russia’s credibility in Ukraine and among the Ukrainian authorities. Experts also suggest that the real reason behind these claims is to get the control over the Church and 12 million of its members to secure the victory of the ruling party in the upcoming elections. The fact that the Ukrainian Orthodox Church does not fall under the regulation of the Ukrainian Parliament by its Constitution adds even more irony to the overall situation.
However, such policy can lead to much more dramatic outcomes and destruct one of the last national values that still holds the country together – the people’s faith. Known for its deep cultural background defined by its history and religion that find its roots back in the 10th century the dominant part of the Ukrainian population is orthodox Slavic people who accurately keep their traditions and culture. Once they are destroyed the entire country might disappear from the map.
With another milestone of the upcoming FIFA World Cup 2018 yet to be passed, Russia is heading towards the next major international event: EXPO 2025. Ekaterinburg, a Russian city that lies on the East of the Ural mountains is about to compete along with Osaka (Japan) and Baku (Azerbaijan) for hosting the prestigious exhibition. But what can a 2-million city located just on the border of Europe and Asia offer a toffee-nosed tourist?
Indeed, Ekaterinburg is not a mass tourist destination like, say, Dubai or Bangkok. However, this modern and dynamically growing city still keeps inherent constraints in its development. Its compact structure and accurate infrastructure has made the city a top destination for modern construction and architectural projects.
The winning of the contest for best architecture and urban planning concept for the EXPO Park in Ekaterinburg by the architectural firm Bechu & Associés known for designing the EXPO parks in Milan and Shanghai is just the perfect proof of that. A permanent host of the annual INNOPROM fair and Russia-China EXPO, Ekaterinburg offers an ultimate balance of culture and modernity, mainly due to the city’s history that goes deep back to the beginning of the 18th century from the time of the first Russian industrialists, the Demidov dynasty, who set up the iron factories and literally determined the fate of the Urals, as being the central core of Russia’s industrial might. Yet, Ekaterinburg is considered a relatively young city. Founded in 1723, it offers a mix of Russian industrial production and hi-technologies, alongside a historical element from Russia’s 18th and 19th centuries.
Perhaps, this unique mix of the past and the future, history and high technologies win over the hearts of city visitors and international guests and residents. U.S. Consul General in Ekaterinburg, Dr. Paul M. Carter said he would be glad to see Ekaterinburg the winner of the EXPO 2025 despite the official disapproval of this idea by the U.S. government. His words were echoed by French Consul General in Ekaterinburg Eric Millet.
While many in the world consider Dubai, Singapore or even Istanbul models for “out of the box” progress, Ekaterinburg stands as a shining star in the center of the Ural mountains, dividing the continents by its Europe-Asia border. It is here that the crossroads of an ambitious new world is emerging.