BEIJING, May 14. (RIA Novosti) - Favorable terms proposed by St. Petersburg will allow it to attract up to $1.5 bln of Chinese investment within eight years to carry out a social infrastructure project. On May 14, St. Petersburg administration intends to sign an investment contract with Shanghai Industrial Investment on the terms of constructing a multifunction complex in St. Petersburg, the city's governor Valentina Matviyenko announced in the Chinese capital on Friday.
At Friday talks in Beijing the Chinese party emphasized the importance of the project, she said. "This is China's largest investment project abroad," she explained, adding that this pilot project was also expected to demonstrate the country's abilities.
Matviyenko described the project, Baltiyskaya Zhemchuzhina, as "a very necessary and socially important project for the city." After its implementation St. Petersburg will receive 1 mln sq m of housing, a social infrastructure, including hospitals, schools, clinics, kindergartens, sports facilities, hotels and business centers, and an improved embankment and beach, she said.
The project will provide housing for 35,000 citizens of St. Petersburg, Ms. Matviyenko emphasized. The city and Chinese investors are both interested in the success of the project, she added.
"Importantly, Chinese investors are coming to an empty place, where there is neither engineering infrastructure nor heat sources," she said. The Chinese company will have to invest $200 mln only to prepare the territory and create engineering infrastructure, she added.
On May 14 Shanghai will host the opening of an economic forum titled "St. Petersburg - Shanghai: Developing Cooperation in Trade and Investment". Ms. Matviyenko is expected to speak at the opening.
The agreement on the procedure of fulfilling the strategic project was signed on December 20, 2004. The construction will be launched in June 2005 and is scheduled to finish in 2010-2013.
Earlier the St. Petersburg administration's press service reported that the investors intended to invest $1.5 bln in the construction.