On September 15, the Deputy Minister of Economic Development of the Russian Federation, Dmitry Volvach, and the Deputy Director of the Department for Special Programs and Projects of the Ministry of Economic Development of the Russian Federation, Anton Melnik, visited the de facto Republic of Abkhazia.
During the long visit, Volvach held meetings with representatives of the de facto government and inspected construction and repair works which are ongoing under the investment program developed by Russia to promote the socio-economic development of the occupied regions of Georgia.
On the first day of his visit to the region, Volvach, together with the chairman of the de facto government, Konstantin Jusoev, inspected the construction process of the Mziugomi camp which will accommodate 150 children. The camp is being built on the territory of a former tourist base in the Java region. The completion date of the construction work is set for 2024.
On the same day, a working meeting discussed the socio-economic relations between the de facto republic and Russia. At the meeting, Volvach mentioned that the region has resources for tourism development. It was also noted that the region needs more private investors, large projects and much work so that “neighboring partner states see interest in this.” The agenda of the meeting also included the issue of debt repayment to the Inter Rao Russian energy company which supplies electricity to the occupied region.
Volvach said that Russia sees a way for the development of the occupied regions not only through the promotion of investment programs, but also with the help of private investors. “For this reason, we will periodically introduce the republic to the CIS investment market,” the Deputy Minister noted.
Further details of the meeting are unknown as the conversation continued behind closed doors.
Volvach also met with the de facto President, Alan Gagloyev, and discussed various issues. In the Tskhinvali region, special attention is paid to the production of construction materials. For this purpose, the Ir-Basalt company was established in the region, the factory of which was built with Russian funding. Although the construction work has been completed, the company has not yet started production. As per preliminary estimates, the factory will contribute over RUB 60 million to the “state budget.” At the meeting, Volvach emphasized that, for economic development, it is important that the plant starts operating in the near future, so that de facto the republic receives its first income.
The ongoing reconstruction of the Kvemo Zaramagi-Roki crossing checkpoint was also discussed. The checkpoint connects road traffic between Russia and the region. The reconstruction envisages the expansion of the checkpoint road and was started on June 20, 2023. As Volvach noted, the reconstruction of CCP is important and a priority for the Ministry of Transport of Russia.