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Buryatias wealth? Baikal the folk

Author:  Malkin V.
Source:  Baikal-GID. - 2010. - 1 (22). - . 74-75.

Vitaly Borisovich Malkin, born on 16.09.1952, is a member of the Council of Federation Committee on international affairs, a member of the Council of Federation Committee   on   international   affairs, a member of the Council of Federation Commission on physical culture, sport and Olympic advancement, a representative of the state power's executive body of RB. The date of his     authority     acknowledgement: 01.01.04. The authority's expiry date: July, 2012.

What changes have you noticed since your first visit to Buryatia?

‑ Tremendous changes! As soon as I landed at the Ulan-Ude airport I felt a totally different atmosphere right away. The very first time I arrived here was the year 2000. Ulan-Ude and the

state of the public mind left much to , be desired. Within the last 2-3 years a tremendous breakthrough has actually been notable. The capital has visibly changed for the better. Everything has become animated, life has revived!

I believe Buryatia to be a dynamically developing land in the future, fit for investing funds. It is just the right moment for this venture. In this I see a positive role of the new leadership of the republic despite the fact that this region continuously used to be financially backed only by the state, not to mention its remoteness. The main tax-payers ‑ big industrial enterprises ‑ experienced hardships. And above all, you should take into account long distances, expensive electricity. What do investors need? ‑ They need compact, profitable projects and quickly repaid funds to cover expenses ‑ just "hot" money. How to persuade businessmen to "pump in" the flow of capital exactly into this region? It would be a great accomplishment if we manage to. And it is just President Vyacheslav Nagovitsyn who has been bearing the brunt with support of his team.

When several years ago I accompanied German Gref, Russia's ex-minister of finance, he was bewildered and exited with the beauty of Baikal. Thanks to our mutual work with the Russian government "Baikalskaya Gavan (harbor)" tourist zone began to acquire some real features. It is namely the mountains, lakes, rivers, beaches on the eastern side of the sacred sea, its crystal-clear water, virgin nature, hospitable and gifted people that Buryatia can boast.


What else makes us competitive on the market? What reasons to visit Buryatia can you mention? What were you impressed with during your first arrival? What are you taking to this time?

‑ The inner life of the Buryats. Such a variety of customs and traditions! The Buryats are faithful believers, reserved and peacefully minded showing respect to other confessions. Inside a temple you feel relaxed when talking to a Buddhist lama (monk).

And, of course, I am fond of Buryat art. What marvelous voices of professional singers! One should only hear them! And you will love the vigor, the timbre beauty and richness of voices. Such abundance of the world-famous opera singers is an incredible natural phenomenon with the minority folk. They say it is due to the Mongolian-speaking nomads' vocal cords peculiarity that enables them to produce the sounds of unusual purity and power. Your grand-grandparents would sing free, far-reaching songs across expanse of the steppe. A Buryat song also reminds of a prayer and meditation...

The Buryat national circus troupe is proud of its gifted youth. Little artistic "gutta-percha" girls are, actually a miracle. Many of top guests to Buryatia were amazed by the girls' plasticity during the concert performed in honor of the Government in the new building of Russian drama theatre. They said they hadn't seen anything like that before.

I cannot help admiring Dashi Namdakov's drawings, paintings, sculptures, etc. as well as emphasizing Zorikto Dorzhiev's painstaking in the field of art. They have developed a new style ‑ just a successful fusion of modern and oriental traditions. It is really amazing!

Now the Year of Youth is over. What can you say in this respect?

‑ Everyone who comes to this land immediately   finds    ambitious    and educated young people who are energetic, self-confident, well-bred. They can speak fluent English. The youth should be fearlessly promoted to the top-rank authorities. Russia and Buryatia will be transformed for the better by the young, knowledgable people's efforts. This is what I call the major wealth of Russia.


A year ago, Vitaly Borisovich, you introduced me to Thomas Gad, a renowned brand-creator from Sweden, the author of the slogan NOKIA Connecting Peoples. He wanted to think of a new brand for our region.

‑ Well, let him feel the vigor of Baikal. I am deeply convinced that Buryatia's main brand is Baikal. It cannot be shared with Irkutsk. Yes, there are more beautiful places on our planet, but Baikal has absolutely fantastic, unearthly drive of its own. You get in touch with Baikal as if it were a living creature... I would say that unfortunately its tourist potential is used by 5%. SEZ "Baikalskaya gavan" is to explore Buryatia for the rest of the planet. The construction of the infrastructure objects within the project's implementation in the settlement of Turka of Pribaikalsky rayon makes me happy. Many problems were solved during Baikal Economic Forum (BEF) held   in   July   with   participation   of Sergei Mironov, Chair-person of the Council of Federation, an expert on Buryat and Mongolian culture, Alexey Kudrin, Russia's minister of finance, Vice-Chairman    of    Government   of RF, the persons whose hearts bleed about Baikal, Siberia.

The most important task for the nearest future is to carry out the preparations for 350th anniversary of Buryatia's joining Russia. Two meetings of organization committee with Alexey Kudrin at the head have already been held. As for me, I do my utmost to attract the federal budget's finance for social and cultural needs as well as the local roads reconstruction.



By the way, about a drive. They say besides Baikal there is another miracle in Buryatia imperishable body of Khambo-lama Itygelov. Were you lucky to see him?

‑ Yes, and I was even allowed to touch his hand. A striking effect!

 He sits upright exhaling a slight fragrance. Seems to be alive! I was actually shaken by this. Does it mean the power of belief? How can one explain this phenomenon? Science keeps silent...


With the purpose of rendering charitable aid and backing socially relevant projects in the sphere of education, culture, health protection, physical culture and sport a philanthropic fund "Era" was set up by V.B. Malkin in 2004. Within the Fund activity a financial support to the institutions of culture, health protection, education, orphanages, sport schools and clubs, to veterans, underpaid families was given at the sum of 65.0 mln. rbs.

Charitable Fund "Era" has just completed admittance of the locals' applications for participation in:

‑ The first grant contest projects within "Malaya Rodina" program

‑ Grant contests within "Let us make friends" project realization


‑ targeted at rendering financial support to the republic's municipalities at the sum of 100-500 thousand rbs, the contest fund totaling 3 mln rbs. Participation is restricted for rural, urban settlements, municipal institutions of education, culture, health protection.


‑ This grant contest devoted to the Year of Teacher, is to maintain school-children's initiatives and those of form masters. The total amount of the fund is 1 mln. rbs. Ten projects will be granted, each class is to be presented with 100 thousand rbs.


The end of 2008 saw the signing of Memorandum on cooperation for the period of 3 years between charitable fund "Era" and "The World without Borders" Centre at the US Congress Library...

A delegation From Buryatia consisting of 22 persons visited the USA from October, 29 till November, 9, 2009 in honor of "The World without Borders" program's 10th anniversary. The guests were keen on:

‑ tourism development;

‑ agriculture development;

‑ the youth public associations;

‑ mass media

A tour round the USA was kindly arranged thanks to the initiative of V.B. Malkin, member of the Council of Federation, the founder of philanthropic fund "Era".



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