The Monaco Economic Board has used the International Business Forum (SPIEF) held in June to further strengthen business ties with St Petersburg.
With more than 17,000 participants from 140 countries, the SPIEF is a major event in the business world.
MEB relations with Russia are well established following several trade missions to Moscow related to the 2015 ‘Russian Year in Monaco’, as well as another mission planned to Rostov-on-Don in September, and various conferences and delegations hosted in the Principality.
However, St Petersburg – as the country’s second biggest economic region – has not been explored in depth which is why MEB Executive Director General Guillaume Rose and Justin Highman, who heads its Monaco Invest division, took the opportunity provided at SPIEF to organise several work meetings. This was supported by Monaco Ambassador to Russia Mireille Pettiti, and Monaco’s Honorary Consuls in St Petersburg Nikolaï Orlov and Igor Yurgens.
Meetings were held with leaders of loyal regional partners: St Petersburg CCI Vice-President Ekaterina Lebedeva and Business Russia St Petersburg President Dimitry Panov, accompanied by presidents of Innovation, International Trade, Tourism and Construction Commissions, and those from the neighbouring regions of Samara and Vladimir.
According to the MEB, discussions focused on opportunities and common interests and, benefiting from the extensive networks of Monaco’s Embassy and the two Consuls, the MEB received privileged treatment.
The Monegasque delegation took part in plenary sessions and round tables, as well as meetings and working lunches during which they presented the Principality’s economy. There was also a gala dinner attended by key decision-makers from Moscow and St Petersburg.
The MEB says that it should be able to offer entrepreneurs in the Principality yet more opportunities to expand their businesses at a trade mission to St Petersburg planned for 2020.