Almost a half of all Russian exports, 42 percent, come from Moscow today. Moscow companies sell medical equipment, optics, electronic tools, computers, cars and other products to 189 countries. Most goods are exported to India, the US, Belarus, Kazakhstan and some European countries, such as Britain and Germany.
In addition, both large and small companies work with foreign purchasers. The Moscow Export Centre (MEC) helps them find foreign partners and explore new markets. It provides financial, informational and organisational support and holds events as part of the Made in Moscow programme.
“Moscow is among the largest city economies of the world. As an international intellectual and financial centre, Moscow relies on non-energy exports. 2017 figures indicate that sales by Moscow companies in this segment alone reached almost $25 billion. Important support areas include help in finding new markets and increasing competitiveness by building cooperation chains. Cooperation between high-tech businesses is a goal of the innovation cluster that is being created in Moscow,” Deputy Moscow Mayor Natalya Sergunina noted.
The Moscow Export Centre can also serve as an entry point for foreign investors, purchasers, distributors and technology partners. The centre’s specialists help foreign companies find suppliers, establish contacts with Moscow producers and support talks.
Moscow Exporter School
The Moscow Exporter School is an MEC project that includes free seminars, training and roundtable discussions for beginner and experienced export companies. They can learn the basics of foreign trade, customs control, tax systems, accounting and marketing. All classes are of applied nature, with students learning various promotion strategies from concrete examples. There also are specialised lessons along with basic seminars.
For example, this year, attendees learned the basic exports trends for Germany and China. They also learned how to organise legal protection of intellectual property abroad. The planned classes include seminars on marketing, sales documentation, logistics and online exports. In addition, webinars and mentor programmes will soon be launched as part of the programme.
Federal Customs Service and Federal Tax Service officers, employees of ministries and trade and industrial unions, consulting agency heads and practicing exporters lecture at the school.
The Moscow Exporter School curriculum and registration forms areavailable for downloading on the MEC website.
An individual approach
Moscow exporters can get the information they need either both groups and individually. If necessary, MEC experts can provide consultations on customs control, taxes, accounting, law, and changes in legislation. They can also help prepare export documentation, check foreign contractors, evaluate trade barriers and provide export analysis.
Made in Moscow
Since 2016, the Moscow Government has sponsored free participation in Russian and foreign exhibitions for prospective exporters. The Moscow Export Centre pays the registration and space rental fees, and the costs for moving exhibits and the building of stands. All event participants present their products at the collective Made in Moscow stand (stand concept design and information support are also provided by the MEC).
Over three years, the Made in Moscow brand has been presented at 20 large industrial events, including the Hannover Industrial Fair, MAKS International Aviation and Space Show, Arab Health, Semicon Europa, 2018 Innoprom, Gitex IT Week 2018 and others, with 370 Moscow companies participating.
On 10 December, the unified Moscow brand will also be presented at the Foreign Trade 2.0: Made in Moscow for Exports conference, with 40 companies showing their products. The conference will be attended by more than 3,000 people from 20 countries, including representatives from international associations and trade and industrial organisations from Europe, China, South Korea, Japan, Indonesia, Vietnam, the UAE and Turkey.
Organising business meetings with purchasers, potential investors and technology partners is an important element of the Made in Moscow programme. The MEC facilitates hundreds of meetings at every trade show, and thanks to this, Moscow companies have signed almost 400 contracts worth over 736 million roubles over two years. Another 435 agreements for 2.4 billion roubles are being negotiated.
Programme participants have to pass qualification because they represent Moscow’s entire export sector, not just their products. Individual entrepreneurs and companies that have been in business for more than six months, manufacture goods and have registered in Moscow as taxpayers can join the programme. They must have no tax or other debt and must not be in the process of liquidation, bankruptcy or suspension of operations.
Companies that have received subsidies over the last three years and have failed to keep their commitments to the city are not allowed to participate. In addition, representatives of the Made in Moscow brand must pay the travel and accommodation costs for their employees at exhibitions abroad.
To join the programme candidates must fill in a form for the company to be included in the database of potential participants (the link will be available on the IMoscow website). The centre will contact you when planning travel to a related exhibition.
Subsidies for online sales
The Moscow Export Centre helps companies find partners both in person and online. Exporters that produce non-energy goods receive subsidies when creating an account on Alibaba.com, the world’s largest wholesale platform. The MEC pays 50 percent of the registration fee and 100 percent of the golden status cost for one year.
This status increases a company’s priority in the search list and gives them the right to place goods without limits, connect additional accounts for dealers and distributors, as well as create an online counter and a mini-website. In addition, Moscow exporters receive benefits as they train to work with the online platform.
Candidates for subsidies have to meet the same requirements as the participants in the Made in Moscow programme: They must produce goods and be registered as taxpayers in Moscow. In addition, they must place the Made in Moscow logo on their wholesale website. The participants must also disclose information on the number of trade requests, the volume of export deals, and companies interested in cooperation.
Unified exporters catalogue
MEC participants will also have a page in the unified online export catalogue of Moscow products.
As of today, it has 447 Moscow producers and over 1,200 products divided into 12 categories, including Scientific Research and Innovation, Information Technology and Communications, Machine and Equipment Production, and others.
Potential foreign partners can use the catalogue to see Moscow products and company offers. Soon the catalogue will be shown at all Moscow Export Center events and sent to any interested Russian and foreign partners.