PM ON STATE-AND-PRIVATE PARTNERSHIP IN TRANSPORT DEVELOPMENT

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MOSCOW, October 7 (RIA Novosti) - Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Fradkov believes that the state-and-private partnership will encourage transport infrastructure development in Russia.

"The state-and-private partnership is not a universal solution to all transport problems, but it can increase competitiveness on the market of private investment in this sector, if used correctly," said Fradkov when opening a cabinet session considering ways to improve the mechanisms for implementing large-scale transport projects.

"The development of the transport infrastructure is more than just an economic task for Russia, with its geographic peculiarities, as the growth in production, domestic and foreign trade expose the limitations caused by poorly developed motorways, railways, port and airport infrastructure," said Fradkov.

In his words, "to prevent bottlenecks in this sector, we should concentrate organisational, intellectual, private and state resources on large-scale projects."

Russia has no experience yet, "so it would be a good idea to study foreign experience to avoid repeating mistakes in the future, and solve the problems with financing caused by limited budget capacities," noted Fradkov.

At the same time, he added that business approval of the participation in these projects was not enough - it was important to provide investors with clear milestones that would be formulated in long-term strategic plans of the government. "We should provide a balance of interests for private and state partners, which will make it possible to increase the quality and accessibility of services for transport users," said the prime minister.

Russia's transport development strategy up to 2020 has been almost accomplished, said Mikhail Fradkov.

The document that has virtually been approved will take into consideration new ways of transport infrastructure development, said Fradkov.

"Simultaneously, it is critical to specify and lay down all the innovations [of the transport strategy] in new legal acts," said the prime minister.

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