Krasnodar, 27 August. Our today’s guest is Veniamin Kondratiev, Governor of Krasnodar krai.
Q.: So far, Sochi is the only Russian Black Sea resort that can compete with the international resorts. When will the rest start to catch up with them?
A.: Let’s see what a world-class resort consists of, and whether we have all these constituents. Say, in Russia only Anapa has such broad nice fine-sandy beaches as in Turkey or other countries. The rest is a rather narrow strip of pebbled beaches along the shore. Our active season covers only July, August, September and the first half of October. [Besides], the construction of a hotel means long-term money. If constructors of a residential block can repay their investment within three years, it will take a hotel investor a decade or so to pay off its money. Thus there are very few large investors who are prepared to take part in large-scale projects. Mainly, [tourist] operators work with spas functioning since the Soviet time. As for Sochi, it was governmental money that was invested there when the city was getting prepared for the Olympic Games [in 2014]; this is why it managed to reach the level of many world-class resorts.
Q.: As soon as some revivification began after the quarantine, huge traffic jams appeared along the roads leading to sea.
A.: Regretfully, we do not have enough money to perform all road works that are required at once. On the other hand, our road fund is quite big. As soon as money appears, we get down to repairing certain road sectors. Note that on the whole, the motor roads in the Kuban region are good – our visitors can see that. But the situation is that even if we repaired all roads at once, the jams would not disappear. What is really needed is a new advanced highway, which is even more expensive [than to repair the existing roads]. Another factor is that because of our terrains what we should think of is much more than merely building roads – say, on the way to Dzhubga there are dozens of small rivers, across which bridges are needed. Now it can hardly be guessed how much all this work may cost.
Q.: This summer, Gelendzhik has faced a big problem with water supply. What measures are being taken to settle the issue?
A.: The thing is that the number of [water] consumers has in fact tripled since 2010. Gelendzhik needs a new well – it costs eight billion roubles. The project has been backed by Minister of Construction Vladimir Yakushev. The City Hall is working on its technical justification.
Q.: How probable is the repeated introduction of the quarantine?
A.: The current situation with COVID-19 is unstable – but even when the morbidity race is growing, it is growing in completely different conditions than earlier. We have reequipped our hospitals; they have artificial lung ventilation apparatuses. Over the past four months, the doctors have understood how a COVID patient must be treated. When I announced quarantine last spring, nobody knew what would happen the following day. Now – if I would understand that the situation may become unmanageable, I would take a radical decision. But so far I can see that the region is prepared to for the fight and for medical treatments.
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