CEP20020429000190 Moscow ITAR-TASS in English 1046 GMT 29 Apr 02
[FBIS Transcribed Text]
MOSCOW, April 29 (Itar-Tass) - Russian Atomic Energy Minister Alexander Rumyantsev and President of the British Nuclear Fuels Corporation Hugh Collam met on Monday to discuss expansion of cooperation, including joint Russian-British projects, a source in the press service of the Russian Ministry told ITAR-TASS.
The two officials also considered aspects of leasing of both materials and equipment. The press service source noted that the Russian ministry's tock Company "Machine-Building works in Elektrostal that specializes in the manufacture of fresh nuclear fuels uses a British method of manufacturing nuclear fuel tablets.
[Description of Source: Moscow ITAR-TASS in English -- main government information agency]
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Russia: Shubin Interview on Cooperation of Minatom, Regions
CEP20020425000001 Moscow Yadernyy Kontrol in Russian 29 Jan 02 pp 30-33
[Interview with Mikhail Vladimirovich Shubin, head of Minatom Department of Regional, Cadre and Social Policy, by Yadernyy Kontrol correspondent Dmitriy Kovchegin, date and place not specified, under rubric "Interview": "Mikhail Shubin: 'Cooperation of Minatom and the Regions Is of Common Interest'"]
[FBIS Translated Text]
The activity of Russia's Ministry of Atomic Energy aimed at establishing partnership relations with Russian regions, the territory of which includes sector facilities, has become noticeable of late. The regions in turn also are beginning to realize the benefits of such proximity and cooperation. Mikhail Shubin, head of the recently created Minatom Department of Regional, Cadre and Social Policy, tells about the main trends in these mutual relations and about certain other urgent problems of the Russian nuclear sector in a conversation with Yadernyy Kontrol correspondent Dmitriy Kovchegin.
Mikhail Vladimirovich Shubin is a candidate of economic sciences. He was born in Novosibirsk in 1950. He completed Novosibirsk Institute of Rail Transportation in 1974, after which he worked in Novosibirsk construction organizations. From 1980 through 1992 he was occupied with scientific and teaching activities. During 1994-2001 he was the head of the Obninsk city government (city mayor). Since March 2001 he has headed up the Department of Regional, Cadre and Social Policy of Russia's Minatom.
[YaK] Mikhail Vladimirovich, please tell us about the field of activity and subject of jurisdiction of the Minatom Department of Regional, Cadre and Social Policy.
[Shubin] The Department was established in the spring of 2001. Prior to this there was a Department of Cadre and Social Policy and Production Relations in the Ministry's structure, which later was reorganized as the Minatom Department of Regional, Cadre and Social Policy.
Our first task is to bring the sector up to strength in cadres. In one of the Minatom collegiums attended by Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov as well as by Deputy Prime Minister Ilya Klebanov, the government formulated the primary task of preserving critical directions of Minatom activity: developments in the field of nuclear weapons and nuclear energy as well as other scientific directions.
A critical mass of intellect has to be preserved in these directions. Naturally there is the process of the aging of cadres. Our founding fathers of schools are aging and there has to be a natural replacement. We shouldn't simply recruit young people quantitatively. For example, we accept 230 persons for work and there may not be a single Kurchatov among these 230, but we need one. And so we are seeking Kurchatovs, and in connection with this we are unfolding work with central higher educational institutions such as MIFI [Moscow Engineering Physics Institute], MGTU [Moscow State Technical University] imeni Bauman, MGU [Moscow State University] and so on.
Further, as with any ministry in any sector, we have the problem of filling key positions with cadres. We understand key positions to mean directors and managers of various directions. Above all these are production engineers, who direct the process of production, experiments and tests, as well as managers, who simply are capable of organizing any production process. This is the second direction.
Finally, we support the training and retraining of managers who are engaged in the direction of security.
The second direction of our activity, higher educational institutions and advanced training institutes, arises from this cadre component, the principal task of the cadre direction. In this system we have a rather capacious and qualified training and retraining system.
Our Department also is assigned the function of financial, methods and organizational support of the work of sectoral higher educational institutions and advanced training institutes.
The second block of issues is the block of social issues. Here there are routine tasks which we constantly perform. It includes pension work, work with professional supplementary pensions and work with material support. Minatom funds this program from its own assets in accordance with the Presidential Edict "On Urgent Measures of Social Support to Specialists of the RF Nuclear Weapons Complex" of 23 August 2000. Payments are being made already today. On the order of 12,000 persons who were engaged in the manufacture, testing and assembly of nuclear weapons receive so-called supplementary material support from us. There was difficulty in starting up this program in all of Russia's regions, problems exist to this day, and there is some dissatisfaction. It must be noted that many took this to be supplementary material support intended for those who were working in directions involving nuclear danger connected with possible radioactive irradiation. As a matter of fact, this isn't quite so; these benefits are granted only to creators of nuclear weapons, those who were directly involved in this process.
Added to this, our enterprises have a rather large network of facilities in the social sphere. This includes medical establishments, children's preschool establishments, athletic facilities and so on. As a matter of fact, the social sphere is what is funded from the budget: federal budget, Minatom budget and the budgets of our enterprises. This is a noncommercial sphere, which has to ensure a level of social services or the socioeconomic level of our workers and the population living in our cities and on the territory adjoining our facilities. This is a very large, very diverse layer of problems which we take up.
Finally, the third direction, a new one that was opened during the reorganization of our Department, is regional policy. The goal in following a Minatom regional policy must be to create normal conditions for our sector's technological structure to function. For example, there is the Federal Nuclear Center, which is on a certain territory. Its task is to engage in science and experiments and to put out products satisfying the country's needs. It must be relieved of all other problems. We are the ones who must handle them. We must create conditions under which the population has the necessary socioeconomic level ensuring a person's stable situation, where he doesn't have to solve any other problems except his own main tasks.
There are a large number of issues which haven't been settled because of the changes that occurred in the country and changes in legislation. The problem of determining and coordinating boundaries arises in some of our closed administrative-territorial formations (ZATO's). Today either the directors of our enterprises or the mayors of our cities handle this. As a central staff and a body of state authority, we are getting involved in this process and attempting to conduct it more promptly, more effectively and more properly, and for this we have the authority and the knowledge.
Further, our enterprises in the ZATO's are city-forming and budget-forming; on other territories they may not be city-forming, but almost always are budget-forming. For example, nuclear electric power plants make a very weighty contribution to the budgets of territories. Our large enterprises, at which a significant number of people work, also produce very serious revenues. Therefore there unquestionably is interworking with regional and local authorities in which both the interests of the sector and the interests of the territories must be tied together. And it must be noted right off that we have no antagonistic contradictions, nor can there be any. Why? Because establishing this same social environment suitable for people to live presumes the mutual interest both of the sector as well as of local authorities. Just as it is unseemly to go among poor people in evening dress and travel in limousines, so in exactly the same way we wouldn't want to differ sharply from the environment around us. This doesn't mean, though, that we would like to become impoverished to the level of the territory. We would like the territory to rise to the level of social security, budget support, and wage support, to the level of the sector. And if we can't pay wages to people not working on the territory, we can elevate the social level by contributing to the social infrastructure. There are a lot of examples of this where the sector has a rather serious influence on the creation of this environment for everyone living on the territory.
One other problem we are resolving at a territorial level is that of employment. Conversion is going on in Minatom and the structure is being optimized in terms of its quantitative and qualitative makeup. We know that a certain policy is being followed for reducing nuclear weapons; therefore the problem of population employment may arise and is arising.
If we take the ZATO's, there are programs for employment of the population both in ZATO administrations and at our enterprises. Our goal is to make it so that these programs correspond, so that they are mutually penetrating, and so that the territorial jobs program is oriented toward using the labor force being freed up at our enterprises and at the same time could use the innovations and technologies we have worked out and the skills of personnel. One other very important task of ours is to see to it that the creation of jobs is science-intensive. By accomplishing these two local tasks and bringing them together into a single global task, we also are accomplishing a state task, because we are creating science-intensive production units, without which you cannot get by in the modern world.
[YaK] Minatom has the practice of concluding cooperation agreements with regions. Is this some kind of standard agreement or are they developed individually in each case? What parameters are put into them?
[Shubin] Indeed, there is the practice of concluding Minatom agreements with regions, but these are individual agreements. There can be no standard approach here, because each specific situation has its features and its nuances.
But what is common and what is standard in them? What are the key points of these agreements? Our contribution to each territory's socioeconomic development is of interest to each territory. There is the government decree under which we must spend and are obligated to spend certain amounts in those territories adjoining our facilities. They are called "facilities with nuclear danger," but they are dangerous hypothetically. With that level of security at which we have arrived today, this danger is conditional; nevertheless, it exists. But even if we speak about psychological danger: a person simply lives next to a nuclear electric power plant, Chernobyl stands before his eyes, and he bears some kind of psychological damage. To compensate for such things, there is a government-approved program and a presidential edict under which we are committed, and we invest a certain amount of money in the development of territories adjoining Minatom facilities. The list of these facilities also was approved.
In concluding these agreements, the regions are interested in programs which they carry out, and we coordinate our actions here. Certainly it would be incorrect and even stupid to spend money without considering a region's wishes, needs and interests.
The question always comes up about the cost of electricity, since we produce it. We also try to take interests into account here. There are understandings on restructuring debts and mutual offsets. We help the regions by taking advantage of our generating capacities, and the regions help us untie these knots by taking advantage of the presence of their own regional energy enterprises. This, too, is in our mutual interests.
Minatom also is interested in seeing that social programs such as housing construction, if it is carried on in a region, also interface with our programs and take our interests into account. We participate in these programs and we would like to see housing construction be planned with consideration of the fact that we need to bring the sector up to strength in manpower and we need to solve housing problems.
In addition, we are interested in objective coverage of sector activity. Excessive fear of radioactivity exists and you can't get away from it. There are three population groups: people who aren't interested in this problem at all; people in whom it generates a purely negative response; and people who aren't afraid of this problem. And based on my own experience--I was the mayor of Obninsk for seven years--I can say that there is no fear of radiation where the population in fact lives in regions connected with nuclear energy. Sharp opposition actions arise where we only are in partial contact. As a rule, knowledgeable people don't take such a confrontational position, because they realize that the 21st century, a century of high technologies, lies ahead. Any high technology, that which contains colossal energy reserves, of course contains a certain danger.
[YaK] What regions can be singled out as successful examples of cooperation and where are there certain differences of opinion and contradictions?
[Shubin] I wouldn't begin to cite any examples. Our situation now is being adjusted in all directions.
From the standpoint of nuclear energy, we aren't encountering opposition anywhere today. I can't say that there are substantial problems with the sale of our reactors somewhere on the territories. The heads of developing regions ask us the question "When?" because they sense that this means both serious tax revenues and, most important, covering a most serious shortage of electrical power in the territory.
Moreover, those regions which at one time shut down work on the populist wave of the fight against nuclear energy today regret that they rejected cooperation with us.
With respect to our enterprises which are engaged and subsequently will be engaged in reprocessing spent nuclear fuel, there, too, in my view the situation has turned around. Certainly it must be said that this campaign against the sector, against the import of spent nuclear fuel, nevertheless was largely speculative in nature.
[YaK] How is the task of cadre support of enterprises being solved in a situation where, on the one hand, it is necessary to reduce the excessive nuclear weapons complex and, on the other hand, it is necessary to maintain national security, develop high technologies and develop the sector?
[Shubin] Our sector is a specific and relatively young sector. The creators of our sector, the older generation of our personnel, are alive today. Some have taken a pension and some still are working. Minatom has a corporative solidarity, which bears a completely normal character of concern for its people. We feel sorry to part with those people who created the sector and who worked all their lives in it.
One of the problems is that the aging part of our personnel doesn't try to go on pension; nevertheless, there needs to be a renewal of cadres, otherwise we may reach a critical point where 60 percent of our personnel already will be of pension age. If they should wish to depart simultaneously, a serious problem may arise with providing the sector with skilled specialists.
The first layer of the problem is the smooth movement of the older generation of our personnel to a pension. Where possible, they must be assured a worthy old age. That is why the Blago professional pension fund is gathering momentum with us. It is shifting to an accumulation system, which works both in an individual form with workers and with legal persons.
There also is a rather strong system for protecting veterans at each of our major enterprises. This includes lump-sum payments, which generally speaking are systematic in nature, additional payments for renting apartments, and all kinds of subsidies. A rather large amount of enterprise funds goes for the social protection of the older generation.
The second component consists of people of able-bodied age who still want to keep working, but they are laid off as a result of an optimization of processes and a reduction of defense programs. Here the only method for a painless solution to this problem is a rapid, efficient conversion and the transfer of capacities that had been utilized in the weapons complex to the production of consumer goods. In fact each Minatom enterprise has production units involved with peaceful products.
There is the Konversiya fund in our consolidated balance of tasks and expenditures. Conversion is a rather serious direction. Enterprises simply are obligated to invest in conversion on a planned basis. These investments are not random in nature. It is the obligation of each enterprise to carry out conversion.
There is a government program of settling out people for the ZATO's. It is operating. From a quantitative aspect, it isn't of great significance. There are only solitary instances. The standard of living in closed cities is higher to this day, and so there aren't that many who wish to depart.
[YaK] How has the training of young specialists in the sector been arranged as a whole?
[Shubin] A government decree recently came out about setting up four independent sectoral universities in Sarov, Snezhinsk, Seversk and Novouralsk. Three MIFI branches also were formed. Minatom also became a cofounder of MIFI together with Minvuz [Ministry of Higher Educational Institutions]. This system of universities covers our needs for specialists by 90 percent, but there is the problem of attracting future prominent scientists. Now we have to man our enterprises with graduates from the most prestigious and, I would say, outstanding universities, at least in limited numbers.
[Description of Source: Yadernyy Kontrol-Bimonthly journal of PIR-Tsentr devoted to international security, arms control and WMD nonproliferation.]
Web Reference -- Find Report: Minatom's 'Miscellaneous Resources' Page
[Reporting Internet source find]
Source Name: Ministry of Atomic Energy Miscellaneous Resources
Medium Type: Internet
Type of Access: WWW Homepage
Description of Content: Page carries the following descriptions of various Russian and international departments, institutions, and organizations operating in spheres related to the functions of the Ministry of Atomic Energy [Minatom], together with brief summaries of their main functions:
Catalogue of Products by Enterprises of Russia's Minatom at http://www.nuclear.ru/catalog/productions/. 'Catalogue of civilian products by enterprises of Russia's Minatom, compiled on instructions from Atompromresursy Open Joint-Stock Company.'
[U.S.] Nuclear Energy Institute at http://www.nei.org. 'How do nuclear power stations [AES's] operate, nuclear fuel, safety, radiation, transportation of nuclear materials. Tests available to check your knowledge on-line. About 20 instruction manuals, not expensive.'
Russian Nuclear Weapons, Research, Test and Production Facilities at http://www.fas.org/nuke/guide/russia/facility/nuke. '30 Minatom facilities, coordinates appendix, each with two-three maps or plans (1:10000), 25-30 space photographs, main production lines.'
Russia's Nuclear Complex at http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/nukes/maps/russia.html. 'Interactive map of Russia's nuclear complex with estimates of weapons-grade nuclear materials at each facility. Descriptions of 12 instances of unauthorized transfer of nuclear materials publicized by the mass media.'
The Virtual Nuclear Tourist at http://www.cannon.net/~gonyeau/nuclear/index.htm. 'An amazing site. Run by a single person since 1996. More than 300 pages about the construction of various reactors, ecological issues, waste, response to accidents. Large quantity of photos, plans, web links.'
WEB-Energotsentr at http://www.energocentre.nsys.by. 'This center focuses on information necessary for enterprises, institutions, and organizations whose activity is associated with the production, distribution, and consumption of energy resources, including information about producers and suppliers of equipment, technologies, materials, and services in the power industry sphere.'
Atomic Power Industry and Safety at http://www-koi8.machaon.ru/atomsec/index.html. 'A six-topic study course: Physical foundations of the use of nuclear energy; Its technical foundations; Various nuclear reactors; Radiation safety; Nuclear energy accidents. Simple
language, good illustrations, dictionary of terminology, reading list. On the whole, a good source for non-physics students.'
International Security Center Database at http://www.cisa.lanl.gov/index.html. 'Contains data on 200 enterprises of the former Ministry of Medium Machine Building, closed down in middle of last year. Some information still accessible.'
Nuclear Security Bulletin at http://www.npi.ru/NEW/nucrep. 'Issues Nos 1-30 for 1997-1999.' See CEP20020206000301 Find Report.
START Production Association State Enterprise at http://start.penza.ru. 'START Production Association State Enterprise means development and series production of: Data processing and transmission products; data protection systems; access control and management system; technical means of protection.'
Russian Federation State Scientific Center 'Tekhnologiya' Science and Production Enterprise in Obninsk [ONPP Tekhnologiya] at http://www.extech.ru/src/src_rus/gnc/gnz1. 'Creation of nonmetallic materials on the basis of polymer composites, glass, and ceramics; designing components from them; development of technological processes and production of nonmetallic components and articles, as well as film glues, vibro-absorbing covers, heat isolating and heat protection materials, and other products for the aerospace, chemical, and electrical engineering industries, land and water transport, metallurgy, and others.'
Yadernyy Kontrol Journal at http://www.pircenter.org/russian/publications. 'Abbreviated electronic versions of the journal. "Yadernaya Rossiya" [Nuclear Russia] database in process of compilation (on the basis of open-source publications).'
Izhorskiye Zavody [Izhora Plants] at http://www.izhora.ru. 'The Izhorskiye Zavody Open Joint-Stock Company produces primary equipment for AES's with VVER power plants; transportation and packaging units for storage and transportation of spent nuclear fuel both inside and outside AES's. Part of the Amalgamated Machinebuilding Plants Open Joint-Stock Company.'
Information Site of the Civic Center for Nuclear Nonproliferation [GTsYaN] at http://www.ccnnp.ru. 'Information Site of the Civic Center for Nuclear Nonproliferation (Krasnoyarsk). Dedicated to questions of nuclear safety, problems of spent nuclear fuel, plutonium recycling, and nuclear nonproliferation. News, articles, commentaries, and review from the Russian press, sketches, information about the mining and chemical combine. Available in Russian and English language version.'
Tomsk Vocational School's Chair for Physics and Power Industry Installations at http://www.phtd.tpu.edu.ru:8101/~chair21/tvs/koi. 'Good reference manual for various types of fuel elements.'
MIFI [Moscow Engineering and Physics Institute] at http://www.mephi.ru. '17 dedicated servers. Engineering center, technology park, information security, radiation security, training systems. Eelectronic library: new acquisitions, catalogue (since 1993), multitude of links, copies of articles from foreign journals available on payment. Live legendary male voice choir.'
Republic of Kazakhstan National Nuclear Center [RGP NYaTs RK] at http://www.nnc.kz. 'Official Web site of the Republic of Kazakhstan National Nuclear Center. The basic materials offered on its pages cover mainly the history of the enterprise's creation, topics of work being done and research being conducted, also contains relevant reference and contact information.'
Russian Nuclear Site at http://www.nuclear.ru. 'Independent information source dedicated to questions of Russian and international nuclear power industry. News, projects, commentaries, Western press reviews, catalogue of Russian Federation Minatom's enterprises.'
AtomSafe Site at http://www.atomsafe.ru. 'Selection of mass media material on nuclear topics by the Social Ecological Union. It is not all that simple to respond to some antinuclear theses.' See also CEP20020208000209 Find Report.
Sevastopol Institute for Nuclear Power and Industry at http://nei.iuf.net. 'Terms of admission, faculties, specialization, scientific work, information for applicants and correspondence students, leadership structure, staffers' personal pages.'
Center for Arms Control, Energy and Environmental Studies at http://www.armscontrol.ru. 'Mainly on problems of disarmament and nonproliferation.'
Nuclear Safety Centers at PNNL and ANL (USA) at http://www.insc.anl.gov. 'Sites with information about Russia's AES's.'
Ownership/Affiliation: 'Miscellaneous Resources' page from website of Russian Federation Ministry of Atomic Energy
Access Address: http://www.minatom.ru/links/links.php?razd=3
E-Mail Address: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
Notes: Site carries caveat 'Copyright 2000-2002 Ministerstvo RF po Atomnoy Energii'
Date of Find: 14 March 2002
Document ID: CEP20020307000122
Entry Date: 03/07/2002
Version Number: 01
Web Reference -- Find Report: Minatom's 'Information Resources' Page
Web Reference: Source Assessment of Russian Atomic Energy Ministry CEP20020201000204
[Reporting Internet source find]
Source Name: Ministry of Atomic Energy Information Resources
Medium Type: Internet
Type of Access: WWW Homepage
Description of Content: Page carries the following descriptions of various departments, institutions, and publications of the Ministry of Atomic Energy, together with brief summaries of their main functions:
ATOMINFORM -- Central Scientific Research Institute of the Russian Federation Ministry of Atomic Energy [Minatom] Economy and Information Administration [TsNII Atominform] at http://www.ainf.ru. 'Official site of TsNII Atominform. Structure of the Institute, main avenues of scientific research and its subdivisions, science and technology developments and achievements, news, personalities.'
Russia's Atomic Energy. 21st Century (TsNII Atominform) at http://atominfo.ainf.ru/ae. 'Provision of information to the top leadership about the status of the sector's activity.'
SNG-Atom (TsNII Atominform) at http://www.sng.ainf.ru. 'Utilization of atomic energy for peaceful purposes across the entire territory of the CIS.
Emergency Response Center [Avariyno-Tekhnicheskiy Tsentr] at http://www.atom.nw.ru/ATC/atc.htm. 'Radiation situation in St. Petersburg and Leningrad Oblast (interactive map). Database of automatic radiation monitoring systems [ASKRO]: Leningrad AES [LAES], Siberian Chemical Combine [SKhK], Scientific Research Institute for Atomic Reactors [NIIAR]. Of course, this is nothing like the US radiation monitoring system in LANL [Los Alamos National Laboratory], but still impressive for our conditions.'
Angara Electrolytical Chemical Combine at http://www.aecc.ru. 'Description of the combine's structure, its subdivisions and products.'
Atomspetstrans at http://www.atomspectrans.ru. 'The Russian Federation Ministry of Atomic Energy's state unitary enterprise Atomspetstrans was founded in March 2000. Its main sphere of activity is to organize the transporation of nuclear materials, radioactive elements, and products from them, as well as other freight; for this purpose the enterprise has been assigned the functions of plenipotentiary sector operator for transportation flows. It also performs the functions of contractor and investor when conducting scientific research, experimental design, prototype, production, and construction work for the creation of modern means of transportation and transport infrastructure facilities required for specialized transportation.'
Balakovo AES at http://aes.balakovo.ru. 'Beta-testing of new site began in October 1999. Radically planned in terms of design, but empty so far (the old version at aes.balakovo.ru is not accessible).'
All-Russia Scientific Research Institute for Chemical Technology [VNIIKhT] at http://www.aspect.ru/vniiht.htm. 'The site contains sections for: ASPEKT Association for advanced complex technologies, avenues of activity, main tasks, association's founders.'
All-Russia Scientific Research Institute for Exploitation of Nuclear Power Stations [VNIIAES] at http://www.vniiaes.ru. 'The server carries information about the institute's foundation and development, descriptions of the avenues of its activity, and lists of its structural subdivisions with descriptions of the subjects of their work and contact information. Brief information about the subdivisions (objectives and tasks). Contact addresses.'
Scientific Research Institute for Atomic Reactors [NIIAR] State Scientific Center at http://www.niiar.ru. 'List of publications (only titles) by Institute's staffers in 1996-1998 (preprints, articles, books, reports). Innovation projects, main achievements in the last three years, new developments for industry, Institute's experimental base, catalogue of radionuclide products, main avenues of activity, structure, news, history, publications, location.'
Academician A.A. Bochvar All-Russia Scientific Research Institute for Inorganic Materials [VNIINM] State Scientific Center at http://www.bochvar.ru. 'Catalogue of technologies on offer (36 links).'
Institute for Theoretical and Experimental Physics [ITEF] State Scientific Center at http://www.itep.ru. 'Only in English, 10 local subdivision servers, electronic versions of preprints for 1995-1999, work programs. Information about projects, seminars, publications, links. Site offers search system.'
Institute for High Energy Physics [IFVE] State Scientific Center at http://www.ihep.su. 'One of Minatom's best sites in terms of information availability. About 20 local servers in addition to the central server. Catalogue and full texts of preprints, abstracts, and conference works since 1996, library's new acquisitions, long list of Internet sites on topics covered by the Institute. Access to the main electronic journals. Database on microworld physics, library of programs for conducting and analyzing experiments, computer implementation of theoretical models.'
Academician A.I. Leypunskiy Institure for Physics and Power Engineering [FEI] State Scientific Center at http://www.ippe.obninsk.ru. 'Databases for fast reactors and fission of charged particles, Nuclear Data Center, AKTIS Association database, Scientific-Methodological Center for Recording and Monitoring Nuclear Materials [UMTsUK]. Attempt is being made to expand the 'Electronic Publications' section.'
Mining and Chemical Combine [GKhK] at http://adm26.krasnoyarsk.su. 'Center for Sanitary and Epidemiological Oversight in Krasnoyarsk Kray at http://res.krasu.ru/radcond [radiation conditions in the GKhK observation zone and Yenisey River ecology].'
Rosenergoatom [REA] State Concern at http://www.rosatom.ru. 'Press Center staffers provide information backup for the Rosenergoatom Concern's official site, process documentary material about the work of Russian nuclear power stations, disseminate it among the mass media, and publish it on the site's pages. New site under development since early 1999, plans to publish in four languages (!) (Russian, English, German, French). Many sections are still empty. "Normative Legal Base" with access to some Russian federation laws, presidential edicts, and international conventions.'
Troitskiy Institute for Innovative and Thermonuclear Research State Scientific Center of the Russian Federation [GNTs RF TRINITI] at http://www.triniti.ru. 'Structure of the institute, main avenues of scientific research by the institute and its subdivisions, scientific and technical developments and achivements, personalities.'
Russian Ministry of Atomic Energy State Regional Education Center in St. Petersburg at http://www.graph.runnet.ru. 'Small strictly functional site. Range of services.'
Central State Institute for Further Training of RF Minatom Senior Officials and Specialists at http://www.scicet.obninsk.ru. 'List of conference management and educational services on offer. Catalogue of programs for further training, professional retraining, teaching seminars on the following subjects: Management of nuclear industry and nuclear energy enterprises; Promising technologies, safety, and ecology; Automation of engineering and management labor; Information technologies and automated systems; Accountancy, book-keeping, and financial-economic analysis.'
Russian Minatom's Safety and Emergencies Department [DBChS] at http://www.dses.minatom.ru. 'Departmental news, objectives and tasks, departmental structure, classification of emergencies, normative and legal documents.'
Atomstroyeksport Closed Joint-Stock Company at http://www.atomstroyexport.com. 'Official site. Sections: History of creation, structure, services, who are we, contacts, conference, news, cooperation principles, quality assurance, projects. English-language version available.'
Konversbank Closed Joint-Stock Company at http://www.conversbank.ru. 'Official site. Under construction for future launch.'
Zheleznogorsk Closed Administrative-Territorial Formation (Krasnoyarsk-26) at http://www.adm26.krasnoyarsk.su. 'The server offers information about the city of Zheleznogorsk, its administration, the city's enterprises, and other material about the city.'
Zarechnyy Closed Administrative-Territorial Formation (Penza-16) at http://zarechny.penza.ru. 'Interesting section on "Municipal Innovations" -- housing on credit.'
Nuclear Energy Institute at http://www-nuen.tamu.edu/inpe/frames.html. No description provided; attempt to access produced error message 'requested URL was not found on this server.'
Russian Minatom's Institute for Strategic Stability State Unitary Enterprise [GUP ISS] at http://www.iss.niiit.ru. 'Official site of the Institute for Strategic Stability State Unitary Enterprise. The server offers information about the Institute and its personalities and partners.'
Rostov AES Infortmation and Analysis Center at http://infoatom.don.ru. 'In the conditions of strong opposition to building the AES in Rostov, this site offers a good example of work with the public (but very little news since August 1999).'
Russian Minatom's Information Institute for Standards at http://standart.atomnet.ru. '"Information resources of the sector's automated system for processing and seeking information on standardization ('Normativ' automated information system): Bibliographical information and full-text electronic versions of normative documents on standardization compiled by the sector's enterprises and organizations."'
Kirovo-Chepetsk Chemical Combine [OAO KChKhK] at http://www.kckk.ru. 'Official site of the B.P. Konstantinov Chemical Combine Open Joint-Stock Company in Kirovo-Chepetsk. The site offers a list of its products and price list.'
Kirovo-Chepetsk Chemical Combine [AOOT KChKhK] at http://city.kchepetsk.ru. 'City site. Long list of the chemical combine's products.'
Kola AES at http://www.kolanpp.ru. 'Official site. Sections: News, forums, leadership, links.'
Leningrad AES at http://www.laes.sbor.ru. 'Dynamics of the utilization coefficient of installed capacity and unscheduled shutdowns during exploitation, discharge of inert radioactive gases. Not a bad page by the Center for Work With the Public (popular information about the power station). Map, plan of the AES, description of automatic radiation monitoring system, dosage readings at 22 measuring points, automatically updated once every 24 hours.'
Russian Minatom's International Center for Nuclear Safety [MTsYaB] at http://www.insc.ru. 'General information, sphere of activities, collaboration, news.'
SNIIP Scientific Engineering Center [NITs SNIIP] at http://www.sniip.ntl.ru. Describes itself as 'Research and production complex for the development of nuclear information measuring technologies and the creation of systems for control, diagnosis, and management of reactor installations at AES's.' 'Output (detectors, miniature measuring instruments, means for detection of radioactive banknotes, total of 15 links). Holding company's structure. The server's financial search section carries advertisements by small trade intermediary firms and even an "Introduction Service" banner.'
Scientific Research and Design Institute for Power Industry State Unitary Enterprise [GUP NIKIET] at http://www.entek.ru. 'Site under construction for launch.'
D.V. Yefremov Scientific Research Institute for Electrophysical Apparatus [NIIEFA] at http://www.niiefa.spb.su. 'Compact description and illustrations of all types of accelerators, laser and magneto-gas dynamics equipment, three science and technology centers (accelerators, microtechnology, controlled synthesis). Good advertisements for a large selection of products.'
NITI [Scientific Research Technological Institute] in Sosnovyy Bor at http://www.sbor.spb.su. 'Brief information on the city [of Sosnovyy Bor] server.'
Novosibirsk Chemical Concentrates Plants [NZKhK] at http://www.nccp.ru. 'The NZKhK Joint-Stock Company is one of Russia's two enterprises (the only one beyond the Urals) producing fuel for nuclear power stations, founded 25 September 1948. Today it is an enterprise with a harmonically developed infrastructure, producing output up to world standards and developing tomorrow's technologies.'
V.G. Khlopin Radium Institute Science and Production Association [NPO RI] at http://www.atom.nw.ru. 'Brief history, main avenues of work. An interesting project in the sphere of www-technologies: Catalogue of standardized [etalonnyy] spectrums (various nuclides, radioactive pollution of the environment, spectrums of fission products and of output at various stages of processes within the fuel cycle).'
Tekhsnabeksport Open Joint-Stock Company at http:\\www.tenex.ru. 'Official site of Tekhsnabeksport Open Joint-Stock Company.'
OIYaI [Dubna Joint Institute for Nuclear Research] at http://www.jinr.ru. 'Almost all publications are available in electronic format. A good prototype of an electronic library, to be aimed at by every scientific organization.'
Gidropress Experimental Design Bureau [OKB] at http://www.gidropress.podolsk.ru. 'The server carries information about the enterprise: History of its development, data about elaborations conducted in the past and currently under way, structure of the organization, and its experimental-research and production bases. There is a list of publications and reports on research and development compiled by the Gidropress OKB.'
Mayak Producion Association [PO] at http://www.x-atom.ru/mayak. 'History, publications, output (7 links). The page was compiled to mark its 50th jubilee anniversary and has not been updated since.'
Kurchatov Institute Russian Scientific Center [RNTs KI] at http://www.kiae.ru. See CEP20020205000088 Find Report.
All-Russia Scientific Research Institute for Technical Physics [RFYaTs VNIITF] Russian Federal Nuclear Center at http://www.vniitf.ru. 'Good section on 'History' (chronology, Russia's nuclear shield, explosions for peaceful purposes, Center's tasks in conditions of absence of nuclear tests). Structure: Brief description (1-2 pages).'
All-Russia Scientific Research Institute for Experimental Physics [RFYaTs VNIIEF] Russian Federal Nuclear Center at http://www.vniief.ru. 'Very interesting popular science journal "Atom" (history of nuclear weapons, new technologies). Unfortunately, not published since 1996. Eleven issues of [journal] VANT (modelling of physical processes), four issues for 1997, one each for 1998 and 1999. Historical sketch on the city [of Sarov] and its memorials. Unique photo museum on nuclear weapons. 'Conversion' section unchanged since 1997.'
Siberian Chemical Combine at http://www.shk.tsk.ru. 'Description of the main plants: Isotope fission, reactors, radio-chemical, sublimate, chemical-metallurgical, scientific research and design institute [NIKI] (700 associates, 25 doctors and candidates [of science]). List of conversion avenues (stable isotopes, magnetic alloys and magnets, ultradispersible powders...).'
Smolensk AES at http://www.smolensk.ru/user/desnogorsk/snpp.htm. 'Basic data about the power station can be found on V. Shchepachev's site.'
Structure of Minatom's Central Apparatus (X-Atom) at http://www.x-atom.ru. 'After a long delay, some new and extensive sections have appeared: SNG-Atom, Russia's AES's in the Intergraph geoinformation medium (only a prototype so far). Standards center (not eveything accessible), Russian-English dictionary (good coverage of nuclear vocabulary).'
Urals Electrochemical Combine [UEKhK} at http://www.ricon.e-burg.ru. 'City site under construction at www.novouralsk.ru. So far, no information about UEKhK. Contact address for FSB [Federal Security Service] with the following caption: "The FSB organs' powers include the struggle against computer crime." The www.ricon.e-burg.ru server advertises UEKhK's products.'
Institute of Physics and Power Engineering [FEI] in Obninsk at http://www.rssi.ru/cp1251/rssi.htm. 'Subdivisions, output, technologies, uk and fz [precise expansions unknown], Russian AES's, publications, city of Obninsk.'
Chepetsk Mechanical Plant at http://www.chmz.net. 'Information about the enterprise, its output, and methods of collaboration with it.'
Ownership/Affiliation: 'Ministry Information Resources' page from website of Russian Federation Ministry of Atomic Energy
Access Address: http://www.minatom.ru/links/links.php?razd=1
E-Mail Address: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
Notes: Site carries caveat 'Copyright 2000-2002 Ministerstvo RF po Atomnoy Energii'
Date of Find: 7 March 2002
Document ID: CEP20020103000240
Entry Date: 01/03/2002
Version Number: 01
Minatom's TVEL Nuclear Fuel Production Holding Corporation Considers New Economic Strategy
CEP20020103000240 Moscow Vek in Russian No 51, 27 Dec 01 - 10 Jan 02
[Interview with Anatoliy Vorobyev, TVEL economic strategy, conducted by Gennadiy Voskresenskiy: "Seven Programs for Tomorrow: A New Economic Couirse for One of the Ministry of Atomic Energy's Largest Structures"]
[FBIS Translated Text]
This year marks an anniversary, although not an even one, for one of the largest corporate structures under the Russian Ministry of Atomic Energy. That structure is the TVEL Open Joint Stock Company [OAO TVEL]. The anniversary commemrates five years since the Russian presidential directive establishing the government-owned joint stock company, which owns a controlling stock interest in the principal Russian nuclear fuel producers.
TVEL views the past five years as a period of growth. Current successes and accomplishments can be traced back to the events of that period. By the same token, those achievements and successes do not automatically guarantee tranquility in the future. However, in order to make the transition to a new stage in its development the corporation needs a new policy, reform and structural changes. What kind? That was the topic of our conversation with doctor of economic sciences Anatoliy Ivanovich Vorobyev, one of TVEL's managers and its director of economic strategy.
[Voskresenskiy] Anatoliy Ivanovich, why did Russian nuclear fuel producers feel the need to integrate in a corporate structure five years ago?
[Vorobyev] The media - your newspaper as well as many others - have on numerous occasions written about why we needed integration. A good deal has also been said on the matter by TVEL management. The main idea is that the economic, technological and organizational integration of independent commercial entities into a corporate structure allows them to make Russian nuclear fuel competitive in the world market. Not one of our incorporated enterprises, no matter how respected it might be in the uranium production and services market, is by itself capable of offering customers such a comprehensive array of services as TVEL can. In that sense, of course, integration has worked.
But in my opinion we should start with the future, not the past. And talking about that future means, in a sense, being philosophical.
Of course, "strategy" can be taken to mean how much nuclear fuel and fuel rod assemblies we need to ship and to whom, how we can increase the degree of depletion, how much raw material we use, what efficiency we get from installed capacity, and so on. But when we talk about strategy, particularly economic strategy, then we need to talk about the main purpose behind TVEL's establishment. That main purpose was to create a flexible and efficient system for the management of and interaction between enterprises in the nuclear fuel cycle. In that sense our current strategy is a continuation of one begun back in 1990-91. That is, the creation of a corporation possessing unique areas of expertise, this in turn giving it a certain range of advantages over its competitors.
Does TVEL have those advantages? That is a hard question to answer, given the current situation.
Despite some "growth areas," nuclear energy around the world is in a state of stagnation. That is particularly noticeable in the European countries, especially in Germany and Sweden, where laws have been passed mandating nuclear power plant closure and decommissioning. Naturally that trend is intensifying competition in the uranium markets. Western companies are expanding into our traditional markets, something that has a direct bearing on Russia's interests.
Analyzing the situation in nuclear fuel markets and TVEL's place in them, we are forced to deal with stepped-up integration processes between the largest Western companies. The alliance between BNFL (British Nuclear Fuel Ltd.), the U.S. company Westinghouse, Germany's Siemens and France's Framatom, as well as an active (or, rather, aggressive) patent policy on the part of Western companies, attempts by Westinghouse to "invade" the Ukrainian market - these things all indicate a desire to redistribute existing markets and restrict TVEL's presence in the European market.
The only way to defend our positions is to develop a new course in strategy and economic policy that will provide a proper response to the global challenges presented by multinational corporations.
We put a lot of thought into what that course should be. We concluded that it is essential to loop the nuclear fuel cycle with which we are involved into a single chain, from raw materials mining to assembly production, so that our customers in the West and in the East will not just be dealing with a commission salesman who sells the product and then is free of any obligations, but instead with the kind of company that can offer them a full-fledged, comprehensive package of services. Services not just in terms of supplying new fuel, but also returning irradiated fuel rod assemblies. Services involved in the development, licensing and manufacturing of nuclear fuel, something that not a single one of our incorporated enterprises could provide individually. This all requires major scientific and technical support, and that means it will be necessary to invest significant amounts in research and development and intellectual property protection. Overall that is the basis of our competitive advantages, based upon a philosophy of integration.
[Voskresenskiy] If there is anything that can be added to what you have said, it is just that these are competitive advantages in a very high-tech field. Not in a raw materials market like oil or gas, but in fact in a high-tech market...
[Vorobyev] Yes, of course. It is no secret that there are areas in which we are seriously behind. It would be naive to assume that within just a few years time we can achieve the level of our main competitors in the area of financial capital turnover or any large-scale non-raw material business. In my opinion the only thing that is left in Russia at all is an immense body of work that has already been done in science and technology, sort of like our unutilized intellectual capital.
TVEL is one of the more important reasons our country has been able to preserve and mobilize its scientific and technical potential. Specifically, TVEL was behind the creation of the TVEL-Science Association [assotsiatsiya "TVEL-Nauka"], an organization in which our leading scientific and design institutes work together. And what is an association? An opportunity to at some point in the future bring intellectual property into commercial applications. To what end? Well, to maintain the competitiveness of our fuel, increase revenue, protect our markets and enter new ones.
Working with intellectual property would be a topic all to itself. TVEL has been a pioneer in that regard as well. Today we are working with non-physical assets and accounting for intellectual property on the balance sheet the way we should. Thereby we are creating a new source of science funding, namely depreciation of non-physical assets.
[Voskresenskiy] The use of intellectual property in commercial applications has always been and remains to this day the weakest aspect of Russian economic activity, in contrast to the developed countries, where that work was always been accorded the status it deserved. How has TVEL managed in the past and continued to manage not only to protect is intellectual property, but also to find commercial applications for it?
[Vorobyev] Mainly thanks to the fact that our management has always strived to introduce innovations into what one might call the classic business process, into technological and production processes. One of the innovations with which we approached our operations process was our work with intellectual property. About three or four years ago we noticed that stock in one of our leading enterprises was being actively bought up. That was the Novosibirsk Chemical Concentrate Plant. Then the same situation was repeated at another very large enterprise, a machine building plant in Elektrostal. Of course there are only a few reasons why that happens. In this case much of it was due to the fact that the enterprises' stocks were greatly undervalued.
In the West the largest companies' value breaks down into two main parts: 40-50% is the value of fixed production assets, and up to 50% consists of the brand name, intellectual property, certain patents and good will - the company's reputation and other protected trademarks. And in our country? When we analyze enterprises' balance sheets, we try to estimate their market value, and virtually never is there any weight whatsoever given to intellectual potential, unique technologies or experts' knowledge and experience. The result is that stocks are cheap and naturally can be bought up for a pittance. After studying that unfortunate experience we concluded that we can and must substantially increase the market value of our enterprises, mainly by properly accounting for the accumulated intellectual potential and creating additional revenue through the use thereof.
We started out by doing an inventory of that potential, by clarifying which developments and technologies were being used. It turned out that TVEL and its enterprises spend millions of rubles on R&D every year but that unfortunately the results of that R&D work are not always properly reported. Then we started creating dossiers that specifically described how, where and at what stages various R&D results were being utilized in production. That was what later allowed us to come up with a market valuation of our non-physical assets. In this way it became possible to create new sources of self-financing for the science itself.
That meant simultaneously defending our markets. With Russia facing a real patent war around the world, with the largest Western companies developing a definite patent strategy to protect their intellectual property and bring it into commercial application, we are achieving a different result, and a highly important one: in effect we are patenting our markets. By doing a pretty fair job of defending them! And, going forward, by countering unscrupulous competition.
[Voskresenskiy] Speaking of new strategy, TVEL points out in its corporate documents that that strategy is aimed at strengthening the competitive advantages of Russian producers. Then they go on to talk about promising new markets, particularly in the Asian region. The most remarkable thing about this is that TVEL, despite stiffer competition in the uranium and nuclear fuel markets, has not only protected but actually expanded its positions. The question is, how?
[Vorobyev] Of course this was due in large part to our competitive advantages with regard to price. And that in turn is affected by many factors. That is no secret; many people are well aware of it.
But are many people aware that competitive advantages can be achieved only thanks to systematic organization of operations within TVEL? After all, that was precisely what allowed us to lower our costs. Furthermore, currently as one of the focuses of our new strategy of harmonizing intra-corporate relations we are striving to further develop and improve that systematic organization. We view a possible transition (this of course will be a multistage process) of TVEL into a single stock as one element in this strategy...
[Voskresenskiy] What would that be, a single TVEL stock?
[Vorobyev] Essentially the same process that is currently active in virtually every sector of Russian production, from the oil industry to the baked goods industry.
The gist of the process we are considering is that the statements originally contained in the Russian president's directive, defining the principles and approaches to a new organization for Russia's nuclear fuel cycle, have evolved substantially over the past five years, and at some stages there has occurred (and by no means in a positive way) a transformation of the mechanisms of interaction between the parent company and its subsidiaries.
Management of intra-corporate enterprises has begun to be carried out not so much on the basis of the "Law on Joint Stock Companies" as through financial and economic mechanisms. Along with the positive effects of this transformation (the transition from "vertical" management to economic partnership relationships between the commercial entities, i.e. TVEL and its intra-corporate enterprises) many problems have also arisen, without solutions to which it will be impossible to have any new economic policy. TVEL's lack of working capital to service its production and commercial cycle for fuel rod assembly manufacturing has for a number of years forced us to tolerate a situation in which subsidiaries (for example, OAO Mashinostroitelnyy zavod, located near Moscow in the city of Elektrostal) have been the parent company's largest creditors. They have been responsible for acquiring the whole range of essential components and materials and independently promoting their products in some sections of the uranium market. This made it necessary to resort to complicated barter and promissory note systems here in this country, raising the cost of the finished products. Sometimes that cost increase was unjustified and due solely to the poor functioning of economic mechanisms of interaction between the holding company and its subsidiary, and between the subsidiary and its financial agents.
Given these circumstances, and also analyzing global merger and acquisition strategies in the worldwide nuclear business, we concluded that one of the main priorities in TVEL's new economic policy course should be restructuring of its relationships with intra-corporate enterprises - including through a long-range transition to a single stock.
That strategy and the restructuring of the corporate structure means, above all, strengthening intra-corporate ties and strengthening centralized management. It also means adding to our companies those raw materials suppliers involved in nuclear fuel production who were "left out" in 1996. All this will allow us to eliminate the proliferation of settlement and payment systems, lower production costs and tax losses, and consolidate our capital and investment resources.
By the same token, a policy in which administration comes from the single center of the corporation does not allow the enterprises to compete among themselves in foreign commodity or raw materials markets. But there have been examples of that kind of competition between our enterprises.
We face the task of developing a system of economic evidence to support the advantages of the proposed concept. The main impetus here will have to come from economics, common sense, appropriateness to production and considerations of corporate efficiency. If consolidated resources and profits go to investment in production modernization and are spent to meet enterprises' basic needs, then what objections could there be to those arguments? Consider leasing, for example. Everyone is already convinced of enterprises' obvious benefit from that investment tool. In Novosibirsk we have set up tablet and powder manufacturing facilities to replace previous suppliers, and as a result we are expanding our production capacity. Renovation of our largest zirconium manufacturing facility in Glazov happened using funds directed to that project by TVEL.
The most important thing about all this (and everyone agrees on this point) is that it is easier to achieve competitive advantages in a market with a larger corporation. In that sense the principle of "what is good for TVEL should also be good for its subsidiary enterprises" is fully justified. That is the goal that we constantly have before us.
[Voskresenskiy] The press often inquires about the Ulba plant in Kazakhstan. What is the current status of efforts to acquire stock in that enterprise? And where do efforts to establish a joint Russian-Kazakh-Ukrainian enterprise in the nuclear fuel industry stand?
[Vorobyev] At this stage, which is characterized by mergers and acquisitions among our Western competitors, their expansion into our markets and the patent war that we discussed previously, we are naturally taking advantage of our direct ties to partners in the CIS countries, and in this regard we are seeking some sort of countermeasures and offering our partners terms of cooperation that are at least no worse than what our competitors have to offer.
As for the Ulba plant specifically, it has always played an important role in our production collaboration. Naturally we are interested in maximum reinforcement of collaboration with it as one of our most important strategic partners in nuclear fuel manufacture. We were guided by these considerations when we began talks regarding possible TVEL integration with that enterprise. Incidentally, we met with understanding on the part of the management of Kazatomprom, Kazakhstan's national nuclear company, a structure similar to OAO TVEL.
There are obvious prospects for a strategic partnership between us. After a series of negotiations we have concluded that the most reasonable step toward production integration will be for TVEL to acquire a "golden share" in that enterprise. This will allow us to influence the enterprise's strategic decisions and give us veto power over certain of its decisions.
As for a joint venture... A venture of that nature was registered just recently, back in the fall. However, it would be premature at this point to speak of creating any large-scale production in Ukraine - all the partners recognize that. So far we are only talking about some elements of partnership. However, the outlook for it is quite optimistic.
By and large all these positive trends are, once again, dependent upon the success of efforts to improve intra-corporate relations in the Russian nuclear fuel cycle. It is clear that expanding its potential by taking in key enterprises will create the prerequisites for implementation of new marketing opportunities that have opened up since the passage of a new package of laws permitting the importation of irradiated nuclear fuel into Russia and Russian-American initiatives regarding the use of spent plutonium, which will eventually substantially strengthen Russian positions in the world market.
[Voskresenskiy] To what are you referring?
[Vorobyev] To the fact that new opportunities are opening up in our relations with foreign partners. If TVEL offers comprehensive services involving the processing of irradiated nuclear fuel in Russia as well as the supply of new fuel, that of course opens up completely new market prospects, both with regard to the profitability of sales and to expansion of existing markets and entry into new ones.
[Voskresenskiy] However, would you agree that in order for those opportunities to open up, it will take legislative initiatives aimed at normalizing the legal framework with regard to nuclear materials - irradiated nuclear fuel, fuel rod assembly leasing, etc.? What about that?
[Vorobyev] Yes, that is true. And that is precisely what we are working hard on right now. By the end of next year we should have drafted five documents to follow up on the recently passed "nuclear" laws. Of these the highest priority one concerns authorized organizations; these would be defined as OAO Tekhsnabeksport with regard to irradiated fuel assemblies of foreign manufacture, and OAO TVEL with regard to fuel assemblies of Russian manufacture that were shipped to the West. This document has already received all the necessary approvals and has been submitted to the government. A second document outlines procedures for the importation of irradiated fuel rod assemblies into Russia from foreign states for the purpose of temporary production-related storage and subsequent reprocessing. This has already been submitted to the Ministry of Economic Development, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Protection, the Federal Agency for Nuclear and Radiation Oversight - to a total of 10 different agencies - for approval. Next year we intend to draft another three documents, specifically regarding expense procedure and the precedence of funding for environmental programs. To put it briefly, we still have a lot of work to do to ensure that the billions of dollars cited in the press, dollars that have now become the talk of the town, really do start flowing into this country.
On the other hand, TVEL does have certain competitive advantages over other agents in this market. Among them are our package services with regard to the supply of new nuclear fuel and the return of irradiated fuel assemblies, post-reactor testing for the purpose of product improvement and, possibly, the provision of a place of the temporary, production-related storage of irradiated nuclear fuel.
[Voskresenskiy] Advantages are of course a good thing. But TVEL itself has acknowledged that it needs to improve. Could you address that in more detail?
[Vorobyev] When speaking of improvement, or more precisely of self-development, we are talking about the fact that the need to get back to the mission set forth when our corporation was founded. And formulate our strategy accordingly. The strategy consists of two focuses. The first is to strengthen the vertical axis of intra-corporate management. In that regard everything has been falling into place lately. The second focus is to harmonize our ties with the "outside environment." Firstly, with Rosenergoatom and all the other customers who use our products and, secondly, with our suppliers and raw materials sources. Some work is already being done in that area as well.
Basic programs have also been outlined to achieve the goals we have set for ourselves. What kind of programs? Given certain consolidated tasks we have defined priorities in our operations, primarily involving institutional transformations and targeted guidelines. We are proposing to realize those targeted guidelines by implementing seven main economic programs, to be carried out in conjunction with the overall restructuring of the nuclear fuel cycle - improvement of intra-corporate relations, harmonization of ties with the customers who use our products, and incorporating enterprises from the raw materials sector. The seven economic programs are "investment," "costs," "intellect and innovation," "durability," "information," "law" and "capital." A whole article could be devoted to each of these.
[Voskresenskiy] One last thing, Anatoliy Ivanovich. What, in your opinion, have been the main results of TVEL's development over the past five years of growth?
[Vorobyev] In just a couple of words, they are that there has been a fundamental change in our entire intra-corporate ideology, from "who beats whom" to "who serves whom." That is, we have moved from the practice of total competition to a realization of the philosophical truth that all of us are part of one family, united by the understanding that TVEL is not an administrative/bureaucratic superstructure, but instead a capable structure that helps direct the whole production system, knowing in the process which priorities should be emphasized and how investment resources should be consolidated. That, I am convinced, is the most important result of our five years of development.
[Description of Source: Moscow Vek in Russian -- weekly political newspaper with links to Konversbank and the Ministry of Atomic Energy]