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Vologda Region to strengthen partnership ties with France.
On December 4, Mr. Hughes de Chavagnac, Consul General of France in St. Petersburg, made an official visit to Vologda and met with Vologda Region Governor Oleg Kuvshinnikov. Issues of expanding Russian-French cooperation were in the highlight of the discussion.
The head of the Vologda Region briefly told the guest about the history of partnership ties between the Vologda Region and France and mentioned the legendary Vologda butter. Historically, dairy products produced in the Vologda Region have been famous for their taste and high-fat content.
Vologda butter was created by Nikolai Vereshchagin, the elder brother of famous Russian war artist Vasily Vereshchagin, who studied the art of painting in Paris and where his first exhibition was organized.
Born in the town of Cherepovets (Vologda Region), Nikolai Vereshchagin founded the butter and cheese making industry in the Russian Empire. He invented the recipe for Vologodskoye Butter after his visit to the World Fair in Paris. In 1870 at the World Fair in Paris, young entrepreneur Vereshchagin spotted butter from Normandy and its clear nutty taste inspired him. The next year he opened the first butter-making plant in the village of Molochnoe not far from Vologda.
Vereshchagin suggested the new technology of butter-making using hot cream that impacted the “nutty taste.” This was originally called Parisian butter, even though it was made in the Vologda Region. It wasn’t until Soviet times that it became “Vologda butter.”
In January-September 2018 the foreign trade turnover of the Vologda Region and France totaled USD 85,6 mln and increased twice as compared to the same period of 2017. Ferrous metallurgy, chemical and timber industries take a dominating position of the region’s external trade turnover.
Mr. Kuvshinnikov told M Hugo de Chavagnac, Consul General of the Republic of France about main areas of international cooperation between the Vologda Region and France.
Cooperation of the Vologda Optical and Mechanical Plant with Thales Optronics (France) started out a few years ago when the French company launched a new maintenance centre designed to meet users' availability in Vologda. The maintenance centre is the first step in an ambitious project aimed at jointly developing cutting-edge infrared technologies with Russian industry.
Jointly with Air Liquide (France), Severstal set up its own air separation unit to meet the increasing requirements in oxygen of the Cherepovets site. This unit was designed and assembled by Air Liquide's engineering department. It is the largest air separation unit in Russia and the largest in the world dedicated to steel production.
PhosAgro, a leading global vertically integrated phosphate-based fertilizer producer, signed a contract with an international consortium led by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd for construction of a new, energy efficient ammonia production plant at PhosAgro-Cherepovets in the Vologda Region.
M Hugo de Chavagnac focused on other promising areas of cooperation, namely new joint projects in the field of public health. The Russian National Network Association of Healthy Cities, Regions and Settlements is chaired by Vologda Oblast Governor Oleg Kuvshinnikov. It has been operating since 2010. The Association comprises 70 municipalities with a population of over 16 million people. According to the Consul General there are opportunities for mutually beneficial cooperation in this field too.
The French Consul General thanked the host party for the warm welcome, the informative conversation and expressed hope that the partnership between the Vologda Region and France will last.