Vladimir Putin visited the new Komatsu plant in Yaroslavl late last week. The Prime Minister decided to see with his own eyes one of the most technology-intensive production sites of special-purpose machine-building in Russia, launched just two weeks ago. We have to give it to the Japanese company; they received their high-ranking guest with grace.
The usually composed Japanese were clearly trying to impress the Prime Minister of Russia. There was a question one could read on their faces: can they count on Russian government’s support? Komatsu is indeed a pioneering company as the Yaroslavl plant is the very first integrated excavator assembly works in Russia with foreign investment involved.
The Prime Minister first inspected a robot-manned line, with Komatsu executives presenting the sketch of the production process. He even climbed into a Yaroslavl-made excavator to get a better feel of the machine.
Vladimir Putin announced that the Russian government considers cutting import duties on components and raising them as manufactured goods go.
Such was the reaction to Komatsu entry into Russia. The corporation was given the green light to become a full-fledged member of the Russian market.