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Russia's far east eyes development at APEC meetings (4)

(China Daily)

13:22, September 06, 2012

Such positive sentiments are not shared by all.

"Nobody experiences particularly warm emotions," regional lawmaker Artyom Samsonov says of his fellow easterners' attitude towards Putin, who in a national television question-and-answer show in 2007 promised new investments to halt the depopulation of the Primorye region as people sought work elsewhere.

Five years after Putin's volley of promises, the young, educated people of Vladivostok are still leaving, while the city can boast another trophy of regional development - a second bridge built at a cost of $1 billion.

Leaders will sweep in their limousines across the world's biggest cable-stayed bridge - its pylons nearly as tall as the Eiffel Tower in Paris - to the summit venue on Russky Island. They will be put up at a newly-built university campus, with some delegates sleeping in student dormitories.

"You start to think, how much did they spend on this bridge and who, at the end of the day, needs it?" said Samsonov, a 37-year-old opposition activist. "There is no relationship between the costs and the benefits."

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