13:36 GMT30 March 2020
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    2016 Eastern Economic Forum in Russia's Vladivostok (41)
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    Russia should improve infrastructure in its Far Eastern regions in order to lure more Asian investors to take part in their development, Michael Tay, Singapore’s former ambassador to Russia, told Sputnik on Friday.

    VLADIVOSTOK (Sputnik) — The former ambassador, who also founded the Russia Singapore Business Forum (RSBF) in 2006 and is currently the director of the Singapore-based Foundation for the Arts and Social Enterprises, is currently attending the Eastern Economic Forum (EEF) near the Far Eastern Russian city of Vladivostok.

    "The Russian Far East is so close to Asia Pacific, Moscow is so close to Europe, so it is the natural advantage for the Russian Far East to cooperate more with Asia Pacific countries. To Make Russian Far East more attractive is to [show] the rest of the world what Russia represents…Regarding attractiveness of the Russian Far East in particular, it is worth to start from the basic level – infrastructure. The government should make some initiatives in this area," Tay said.

    Russia should also boost its ties with the outside world by attracting more tourists, he added.

    "Russia is not very familiar to the rest of the world, partially because of the language and history, so tourism is very important. We should not underestimate importance of exchanging people between countries. It is worth to start changes from basic level, continue to move incrementally," Tay said.

    The EEF kicked off earlier in the day on Russky Island near Vladivostok. The forum, which will run through Saturday, is expected to attract some 2,500 participants, from countries including China, Japan, South Korea, India, Vietnam, Australia, the United States and Singapore.

    Tay served as ambassador to Russia between 2003 and 2008 before going on the serve as the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum executive director for one year. He ran the RSBF between 2006 and 2013, while the latest Russian-Singaporean forum took place in 2014.

    2016 Eastern Economic Forum in Russia's Vladivostok (41)


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