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The Foundation was established in 2007 with the aim of facilitating the development of Russia’s economic potential, promoting its national interests, and strengthening the country’s image. One of the roles of the Foundation is to comprehensively evaluate, analyse, and cover issues on the Russian and global economic agendas. It also offers administrative services, provides promotional support for business projects and attracting investment, and helps foster social entrepreneurship and charitable initiatives.

Each year, the Foundation’s events draw participants from 208 countries and territories, with more than 15,000 media representatives working on-site at Roscongress’ various venues. The Foundation benefits from analytical and professional expertise provided by 5000 people working in Russia and abroad. In addition, it works in close cooperation with 130 economic partners; industrialists’ and entrepreneurs’ unions; and financial, trade, and business associations from 70 countries worldwide.

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Threats to Biological Security in the Asia Pacific: New Risks and Opportunities
4 September 2019
15:00—16:30
KEY CONCLUSIONS
Biosecurity is relevant for the entire world

According to various estimates, 390 million people get sick in the world every year. And it is estimated that 3.9 billion people live in the risk zone. <...> The World Health Organization publishes the results, according to which 3 out of 10 causes of premature death are infectious diseases. <...> According to the World Health Organization, more than 14 million people die each year from infections, which is about 40,000 every day — Anna Popova, Head, Federal Service for Surveillance on Consumer Rights Protection and Human Wellbeing.

Investing in biosecurity is economically viable

We believe that we are effective in the Russian Federation, but we also have a function for environmental factors, and approximately the same position: for 1 rouble invested we give 9 roubles in savings in terms of preservation of public health in the Russian Federation — Anna Popova, Head, Federal Service for Surveillance on Consumer Rights Protection and Human Wellbeing.

It should be remembered that one dollar of investment in emergency preparedness eventually generates a potential return of eight dollars — Dorit Nitzan, Acting Regional Emergency Director for the European Region, Health Emergencies Programme, World Health Organization.

Russian expertise in biosecurity is in high demand internationally

In your country, you have developed and made available a large number of solutions that we can implement at home. Russia can be one of the key partners of ASEAN member states in preventing infectious threats. We are ready to come to you, to visit Moscow, because we can learn a lot from you. You are a very important and interesting partner for ASEAN member states, for our region as a whole — Sujariyakul Anupong, Senior Expert in Preventive Medicine, Department of Disease Control, Ministry of Public Health of the Kingdom of Thailand.

According to the cooperation agreement, the Russian side provided laboratory equipment, diagnostic means and a mobile laboratory for the total amount of more than 90 million tugriks. 22 Mongolian specialists were trained in Russia. Annual response drills are held. A joint working meeting of Russian and Mongolian specialists was held in the transboundary zone — Lkhamjav Byambasuren, Deputy Minister of Health of Mongolia.

ISSUES
Growing risks of spreading infections

The risks of infectious pathologies and epidemies does not lose its significance in today's world. This is quite obvious. We are faced with new infections. <...> We are meeting more and more often with infectious diseases that have already believed to have been eradicated, such as measles, diphtheria, typhoid, which are growing in Europe, in addition to the diseases that have been forgotten — Anna Popova, Head, Federal Service for Surveillance on Consumer Rights Protection and Human Wellbeing.

In recent decades, with the on-going globalization, new and re-emerging infections have become an international problem. <...> One of the most important challenges is to determine the patterns of their spatial distribution, as well as accurate and rapid detection of them — Dang Hong Trien, Co-Director General, Joint Russian-Vietnamese Tropical Research and Technological Center.

SOLUTIONS
Holistic approach to biosecurity

The fundamental document for us in Russia today is the Strategy of Scientific and Technological Development of Russia until 2035 approved by the President. <...> Today we need to ensure the maximum level of cooperation and coordination of our actions in order to find practical answers to these challenges as soon as possible. And in this sense, one of the main tasks is to ensure the unity of research work, professional education, and practical solutions so that the entire system to work very smoothly. We need to significantly reduce the period from lab to practice, its industrial scaling and application — Mikhail Kotyukov, Minister of Science and Higher Education of the Russian Federation.

First of all, it is the legal and regulatory framework for biological security. The second is providing resources and financial support. The third is, of course, the availability of trained personnel. Fourth is the availability of infrastructure, testing systems, hardware and devices for identification and indication of biological agents. And the fifth is the scientific development aimed at creating new testing systems, studying the peculiarities of emerging biological agents and, most importantly, the development of drugs for prevention and treatment thereof — Sergei Kraevoi, Deputy Minister of Healthcare of the Russian Federation.

We live in peacetime, but we need to be constantly prepared for some kind of emergency situation, and by being ready I mean to continue research work — Dorit Nitzan, Acting Regional Emergency Director for the European Region, Health Emergencies Programme, World Health Organization.

Using state support to create specialized education centres

In 2017, at the initiative of Rospotrebnadzor, an international biological safety centre was established on the basis of Far Eastern Federal University. <...> Today, we conduct post-graduate training cycles for both domestic and foreign specialists. <...> Since December, we have been planning a series of educational events to train specialists from all APEC countries. In addition, tomorrow we will sign a new agreement <...> on the development of an international master's program in Biological Safety. It has no analogues in the world, where specialists, including those from East and South-East Asia, will be trained — Mikhail Shchelkanov, Head, Laboratory of Microorganism Ecology with the International Research and Educational Centre of Molecular Technologies, School of Biomedicine, Far Eastern Federal University (FEFU); Head, Laboratory of Virology, Federal Scientific Centre of East Asia Terrestrial Biodiversity of Far Eastern Branch of Russian Academy of Sciences.

Expanding international cooperation

We need to focus on the following issues for further cooperation. First, we need to improve international and intersectoral cooperation. Second, we need to organize regular training exercises to ensure constant readiness. We need to conduct field studies of infections other than plague in border regions. Due to the high incidence of plague in the border regions with Russia, there is a need to increase cooperation and to conduct joint surveys in other areas adjacent to them. We need to improve the monitoring of the border crossing point as well as to increase the capacity to detect suspicious cases and primary response measures. We also need to exchange information and experience. It is necessary to focus on building the capacity of local health organizations, doctors and workers in border areas — Lkhamjav Byambasuren, Deputy Minister of Health of Mongolia.

It should not be forgotten that there is a global health manual, version 2.05. It is an international instrument adopted around the world. The World Health Organization has taken on the role of disseminating information on global health. So, this document is a global response to global problems. If there is an outbreak of disease that does not respect territorial boundaries, we have a document that we can refer to — Dorit Nitzan, Acting Regional Emergency Director for the European Region, Health Emergencies Programme, World Health Organization.

Educating the population

People have forgotten what polio is. <...> Because everyone has forgotten what polio looks like, they decide not to vaccinate their children against polio. Let's talk about it, let's educate the public — Dorit Nitzan, Acting Regional Emergency Director for the European Region, Health Emergencies Programme, World Health Organization.

The material was prepared by the Russian news agency TASS