“Technopolis Moscow” has become one of the leaders in the rankings of Special Economic Zones (SEZ) of Russia. Capital Ideas spoke to representatives of the SEZ management company to understand how it managed to do this.
What is the attractiveness of the Technopolis Moscow SEZ for current and potential project participants?
Technopolis Moscow SEZ develops the high-tech sectors of the domestic economy, providing innovative companies with the best conditions for growth. Among the advantages that residents of the Moscow SEZ receive are the modern infrastructure and convenient logistics of its sites, as well as a wide potential for industrial cooperation and economic preferences. For example, they are exempt from taxes on property, transport and land, and the profit tax rate for them is 2%.
Residents can rent a land plot for the construction of their own high-tech production facilities with the right of subsequent purchase, or choose a space that meets the industry-specific engineering, technological or other requirements of production: for example, so-called “clean rooms” or buildings with a foundation that allows the placement of high-precision equipment.
Technopolis Moscow SEZ provides services that help residents to conduct their activities in comfortable conditions. SEZ services are as accessible and convenient as possible for participants of all sites. On the sites of the SEZ there are spaces for placing a showroom, holding negotiations, seminars with potential consumers, conferences, forums, exhibitions, etc.
Its attractiveness is also evidenced by the high places of the Technopolis Moscow SEZ in world and national rankings:
- 1st place among the SEZ of the technical and innovative type in the “V National Ranking of Investment Attractiveness of the SEZ of Russia,” compiled by the Association of Clusters, Technoparks and SEZs of Russia (2021);
- 1st place in the Ranking of investment attractiveness of SEZs and industrial parks, compiled by the Analytical Center “Expert” (2021 and 2022);
- Winner in the category “Development of Medical Technologies and Pharmaceuticals Related to COVID-19” in the Global Free Zones of the Year Ranking, compiled by fDi Intelligence, the analytical division of the Financial Times (2021);
- Second place in the nomination “New Investments,” and the award “Editor’s Choice” in the nomination “Fighting COVID-19,” in the ranking of Economic Zone Sustainable Recovery Strategies Awards compiled by the Investment Monitor website (2021).
How many residents are there today, who are they, and in what areas do they work?
Currently, there are 90 companies which have resident status. In total, more than 200 companies are localized on the territory of the SEZ. Most of the residents work in the fields of microelectronics, electronic equipment, and optics (33 residents), medical technologies, equipment, and biopharma (19), high-tech production (15), and information and communication technologies (14). In addition, residents work in the fields of nanotechnology and modern materials, as well as energy-efficient technologies.
Every fifth resident exports its products. At the end of 2021, companies shipped abroad products worth more than 1.3 billion rubles. Residents’ products were purchased in Europe, the CIS, the USA, Canada, Egypt, Turkey, Israel, and other countries.
Are there companies with foreign participation among them? The business of which countries do they represent?
The residents include several companies with foreign participation. For example, the company “Eastcompeace Rus,” which will work on the production of bank cards and the development of software for eSIM on the territory of the SEZ, is the Russian representative office of the Chinese company Eastcompeace Technology. Now the company is constructing its own building on the “Alabushevo” site.
What are the conditions for those interested in taking part in the work at the Technopolis Moscow SEZ site today? Have there been any changes to these rules after 24.02?
The conditions for obtaining resident status are determined by federal and regional legislation. It is important to us that the types of activities that the resident plans to carry out correspond to the priority sectors for Moscow. There are also requirements which a resident must comply with: for the minimum amount of investments (57.6 thousand rubles per m2 of premises for brownfield projects, or 323.6 million rubles per hectare of land for greenfield projects, for 5 years), revenue (268 thousand rubles a year per m2 of premises for brownfield projects, or 404.8 million rubles a year per hectare of land for Greenfield projects), and the average monthly salary (76.5 thousand rubles).
There were no fundamental changes in the conditions for obtaining resident status. At the same time, of course, at the stage of evaluating the business plan of a potential resident, the risks associated with the availability of foreign components and equipment are carefully assessed. In addition, projects for import substitution of critical technologies and industries are currently given priority.
Is anything being done specifically to attract companies and individuals from foreign countries?
Technopolis Moscow SEZ continues to develop cooperation with interested countries. We are negotiating with special zones and companies from China to help our residents develop mutually beneficial cooperation. In addition, we are members of the World Free Zones Organization which unites more than 1200 members around the world. A representative of our SEZ is a member of the board of directors of this organization.
Technopolis Moscow SEZ pays great attention to development in accordance with the principles of ESG. For the first time, the management company has prepared and published non-financial statements for 2021.
The report of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development on the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals for Moscow in 2021 specifically notes the significant role of Technopolis Moscow SEZ in the sustainable development of the city of Moscow as a whole.
The management company of Technopolis Moscow SEZ has switched to electronic document management for the lease settlements of more than 90% of resident companies, enabling residents to automate accounting activities. As a result, it was possible to completely abandon paper media when exchanging rent documents. Regular events are held to promote sustainable development by residents and employees of the management company.