New state strategy designed to entice young people to take up sailing as a sport

The Russian government is developing a new state strategy designed to promote sailing amongst its young, according to senior officials from the Russian Ministry of Sport and Tourism as well as industry analysts.

According to state plans, the strategy will create the right conditions needed to attract millions of dollars of private investment into the sector, including funds from parents of children who adopt sailing as a pastime.

The involvement of children means the new program will have priority status for the state; its implementation will be personally controlled by the highest Russian state officials, including President Vladimir Putin and Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev.

So far, representatives from several leading Russian state corporations and companies, including natural gas monopoly Gazprom (which is known for its active support of yachting in Russia) and MegaFon – one of the country’s largest telecom operators – have already expressed an interest in funding the program. There is also the possibility that some of the funds could be provided by state-owned banks in the form of loans.

One of the major elements of the program will involve the development of leisure marine infrastructure in some of the country’s main coastal cities. There are also plans to organise sailing regattas, which could involve the participation of foreign yachtsmen.