2017 saw an increase in Russia exports for the first time in the past several years and the share of non-resource exports went up as well, according to RBC+. Deputy Head of the Analytical Center Tatiana Radchenko told an RBC+ journalist about the reasons why tourism, education and healthcare hold the greatest potential when it comes to international markets.
Russia Expands Non-Resource Exports
"Tourism is a very promising business," Ms. Radchenko believes. According to statistics Russia is now being visited by fewer tourists from the CIS and the EU (specifically Poland and Finland) than before but that's being more than made up for by an influx of tourists from China. Out of 18.97 million tourists that visited Russia in the first 9 months of 2017, 1.2 million came from China.
"According to UNWTO, tourism makes up 10% of the global GDP and 53 economic sectors take part in the creation of the tourist product," Ms. Radchenko pointed out. "Meanwhile, Russia's enormous tourist potential still hasn't been tapped properly and the tourist industry currently accounts for only 1.5% of the GDP."
"A special project has already been approved for education where the idea is to implement a number of measures to attract more foreign students. In 2017 276,000 foreign students were studying in Russian universities and vocational schools (about 6% of the total number of students). They came from the CIS, China, Vietnam and, traditionally, from various African countries. By 2025 the Ministry for Science and Education plans to increase the number of foreign students in Russia by 2.5-3 times," the expert said.
Last year Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation also started working on exporting healthcare services, Ms. Radchenko noted. According to her, the main competitive advantage that Russian clinics can offer is low prices: when it comes to standardized medical services, the prices in Russia are 1.5-2 times lower than in Europe or in Israel.
"All of the services mentioned above need to be promoted, popularized and marketed abroad," Ms. Radchenko believes. "I believe that the Made in Russia program as a whole meets those needs and can be effectively used to position Russia as a place for tourism, quality education and treatment."