St Petersburg University has held a workshop for the specialists of the working group on ‘Economy, Trade and Resources’ at the Korea–Russia Dialogue Forum. The topic of the meeting was ‘The Plan of cooperation between Russia and the Republic of Korea in the sphere of clean energy and online platforms’.

Lee Kyu Hyung, the Chair of the Korean Coordinating Committee of the KRD, ex-Ambassador of the Republic of Korea to Russia, made opening remarks. ‘Today, in preparation for the postcovid era, the global community is concentrating on such concepts as “digital” and “ecology”. Many countries have adopted new green courses setting the goals for green transition by means of solving different problems, such as greenhouse gases, depletion of natural resources, pollution of the environment,’ stated Mr Lee Kyu Hyung. He added that Korea is not an exception. Recently, the Korean Government published a road map on the transition to hydrogen energy.

The Chair of the KRD Coordinating Committee on the Russian side, Rector Nikolay Kropachev, pointed out in the opening remarks that both Russia and Korea experience ecological problems. ‘The issues of using clean energy are extremely relevant today both when recycling garbage and getting energy from it, and when fighting the pollution of air by small dust particles,’ noted Nikolay Kropachev. At the same time, the cooperation between our countries in the sphere of ecology is not the only field where our countries should hold a dialogue,’ shared the Rector.

Today, all spheres of human life are being rapidly digitalised, which is confirmed by the format of this event. Undoubtedly, the topic of cooperation in the sphere of online platforms covers a whole range of digitalisation issues in the modern world.

Rector Nikoaly Kropachev, Chair of the KRD Coordinating Committee on the Russian side

‘Specialists from our countries develop not only educational online platforms, but also the platforms that will enable a closer economic, political and cultural cooperation,’ said Nikolay Kropachev.

Kwon Tae-shin, authorised Deputy Chair of the National Federation of Entrepreneurs of the Republic of Korea, agreed that our countries should start a serious preparation for the post-covid period.  ‘Many KRD specialists unanimously claim that energy, fishing, ship-building, processing industry – all traditional fields of cooperation – should demonstrate the dynamics of growth. At the same time, we should significantly expand the horizons of partnership up to the spheres of innovations and healthcare that are considered prospective in the epoch of energy transformation,’ noted Kwon Tae-shin.

Kwon Dong Seok, Consul General of the Republic of Korea in St Petersburg, reminded that last year was marked by the 30th celebration of establishing diplomatic relations between our countries.  Having underscored the relevance of the meeting topic, he wished fruitful work to the participants.

The first session was devoted to cooperation in the sphere of green energy. The section moderator Sergey Andryushin, Deputy Rector for International Affairs, recalled in the beginning of the session that many countries use taxation mechanisms to decrease their carbon footprint. 

This topic is relevant not only for trade and the economy, but also for the development of cooperation in the spheres of science, education and culture.

Sergey Andryushin, Deputy Rector for International Affairs

Chae Wook, the Director of the working group on ‘Economy, Trade and Resources’ on the Korean side, added that the transition to clean energy and the increase in the renewable energy sources in the energy balance is a global trend.   

During the first session, Vladimir Voronov, Associate Professor of ITMO University, made a presentation titled ‘The heavy burden of light hydrogen’; Yang Euyseok, Senior Researcher at Korea Energy Economics Institute, talked about the possibilities of cooperation between Russia and the Republic of Korea in the sphere of hydrogen energy; Aleksandr Solovianov, Research Director at VNII Ecology Research Institute, talked about ‘The role of renewable energy sources in achieving the goals of sustainable development’.

The second part of the workshop was devoted to the issues of Korea–Russia cooperation in the sphere of online platforms development. It was moderated by Elena Sokolovskaia, Associate Professor and lead research Associate at the Laboratory of Asian Economic Studies at St Petersburg University. During the time of the fourth industrial revolution, online platforms impact market development giving rise to new business management models that decrease costs, while increasing performance. During the coronavirus pandemic the role of online platforms has significantly increased both at the domestic and at international level. 

Park Jiwon, Research Associate of the Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA), mentioned the technologies of Artificial Intelligence and big data used in the work of online platforms. In Russia, they are currently characterised as end-to-end technologies. Professor at St Petersburg University Sergei Belozerov elaborated on the potential and the areas of cooperation between the two countries in more detail. According to the expert, the key objective of cooperation between Russia and the Republic of Korea in the fintech market should be the improvement of conditions for its development.

The conditions should provide for the creation and commercialisation of competitive financial products.  The challenges of the fourth industrial revolution should be taken into account as well as the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic. These factors have changed the nature of production, distribution and consumption in the economy.

Sergei Belozerov, Professor at St Petersburg University

It can be achieved by means of strategic partnership, particularly, within the framework of implementing the two initiatives: the Giga-KOREAProject, which is a general plan of developing an intelligent information society; and the 'Digital Economy in the Russian Federation' national programme, which is a strategy of developing an information society in the Russian Federation during 2017–2030.

Equally important is cooperation at the level of institutes that regulate online platform operation, and cooperate in the sphere of developing block chain technology and cyber security.  Elena Sokolovskaia, Associate Professor at St Petersburg University, considers that the cooperation between Russia and the Republic of Korea in the field of big data technology should correspond to the current trends of the developing industry. ‘The coronavirus crisis has demonstrated the importance of end-to-end analytical tools that do not depend on data volume, hardware or cloud platform.  It has become necessary to create platforms that provide for work in all segments of business-analysis,’ noted the expert. According to Associate Professor Maria Tsenzharik, cooperation in the sphere of online platform development embraces the field of software development and fintech, as well as the exchange of knowledge and practices. At the same time, the expert emphasised that this interaction is not limited to technology, since the problems often arise at the level of the platform concept and architecture.

The session participants also discussed the report by Lee Sungwoo, Director of the Korea Maritime Institute, on ‘Cooperation possibilities in the commercialisation of NSR on the basis of IRT 4.0’ and the presentation by Vera Vishniakova, Associate Professor at the Higher School of Economics, devoted to the platform ‘OrientaliaRossica – Asian and African Studies in Russia of the 21st century’.