Russia — Germany: Digital Transformation of Industries and New Opportunities for Cooperation

A panel session titled ‘Russia–Germany: Digital Transformation of Industries and New Opportunities for Cooperation’ was held on the sidelines of the world’s biggest industrial exhibition Hannover Messe on 26 April. The event was attended by Russian Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Vasily Osmakov, Eastern Committee of German Economy General Director Michael Harms as well as the heads of Russian and German companies, including Wilo, SAP, Tibbo Systems, 4.0-Veit, and Severstal. The panel session was organized by the Eastern Committee of German Economy, Mangold Consulting, SAP, and the Roscongress Foundation with support from Severstal and Deutsche Messe.

The panel session was opened by Eastern Committee of German Economy General Director Michael Harms, who underscored the importance of a dialogue between Russia and Germany and noted the recent development in bilateral relations: “We are currently witnessing a noticeable revival in Russian-German trade relations and growing interest from German investors in the Russian market. The development of digital technologies will certainly help to strengthen this positive trend. The opportunities for interaction are enormous, as evidenced by the Hanover Fair”.

During the panel session, Russian Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Vasily Osmakov gave a report on the role of digital technologies in industry and also addressed the development of relations between Russia and Germany: “The Russian delegation’s participation in the world’s largest industrial exhibition Hannover Messe has made it possible to expand international cooperation ties, which will help to meet objectives involving the entry of our competitive products to foreign markets. Germany is one of our key international partners in the industrial sector. We maintain a constant dialogue with representatives of German business and together we are building the maximum transparent rules of the game for foreign investors interested in expanding their level of localization and attracting investment to high-tech production”, Osmakov said.

A key part of the panel session was a discussion of the prospects for industry-based digital transformations in Germany and Russia as well as ways to expand business opportunities in the digital economy, which will make it possible to respond appropriately to the challenges of modern global competition and realize untapped potential.

One of the primary goals of the discussion was to identify a current and potential market for the digital economy in Russia and Germany in order to develop new business models taking into account the current limitations.

Commenting on the results of the event in Hannover, Russian Presidential Advisor and Executive Secretary of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum Organizing Committee Anton Kobyakov stressed that representatives of German business circles have consistently shown great interest in cooperation with Russia, establishing a dialogue based on trust, mutual respect, and the consideration of interests as well as the development and expansion of trade and economic cooperation.

I believe that holding a visiting session of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum on the sidelines of Hannover Messe in Hannover and the participation of our colleagues from Germany in the Forum events in St. Petersburg, which will take place on 1-3 June 2017, will contribute to the development of multi-faceted bilateral cooperation and take it to a qualitatively new level. Today, our countries have enormous potential to deepen cooperation in different sectors, including the digital industry”, Kobyakov said.

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Ilya Shnaider

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