Wuxiaworld > Empire of the Ring > 667 Collectors 1
When the Kazakh Navy requested to share India's military base in the Seychelles, the Indian government gladly welcomed the request.
This was because of the Kazakh Navy's task flotilla which had two Aegis destroyers joined the Indian naval forces, it could more effectively deter China from advancing into the Indian Ocean.
Furthermore, there would be five task flotillas together when the two navies joined forces, so the Indian government offered to take a step further and formally form a military alliance.
So far, military cooperation between India and Kazakhstan had been a loose military relationship that was applied only temporarily depending on the issue.
The military alliance with India, a leading country in the Indian Ocean, was the one Kazakhstan had hoped for, so the alliance was formed without hesitation.
Usually, a military alliance with a conflict-ridden country should be considered, as it carried a heavy-duty to guarantee security for the parties that signed the treaty.
This was because there was a possibility that the country could be involved in a large-scale war. However, considering India's unlimited potential, the military alliance would soon lead to economic cooperation, so the political burden could easily be borne.
This was a high-risk high return.
Youngho could not miss the opportunity to squeeze into India's market that had a huge population of 1.2 billion.
As the military alliance with India was formed, Mittal, who had served as a messenger between the two countries, came to visit Youngho in the royal territory.
Despite his age of 67, Mittal was an active person like a young man.
"A younger man like me should have visited you first. I'm sorry I made you come a long way to see me."
"Your Highness. It's a great honor that you invited a mere merchant to the royal palace. I hope that Kazakhstan will soon be reborn as a great empire."
It was such a big greeting that Youngho was embarrassed as he had never received such greeting words.
Though wealthy enough to be listed as the world's top three and four wealthiest men on Forbes. Mittal was never arrogant. He said that he became the best businessman by his own efforts coming from a poor family in a rural village but he never lost his beginner's mind.
"You're such a modest man, Chairman. Thanks to your efforts, we now have a military alliance with the Indian government. I prepared a small gift as a token of my gratitude, but I'm not sure if you'll like it."
The biggest gift to a businessman would be to introduce a lucrative business.
"You let me be involved in the national matter although you did not need my help. I should be the one to thank you. The Indian government is calling me a hero to the rescue. India is exuberated to have the powerful naval forces of Kazakhstan as its ally."
"Hahaha… Is that so? I'm glad I put you ahead of me."
"But I will not decline your gift."
Mittal was looking forward to hearing what the Duke of Kazakhstan would say next.

"You know that our royal family is developing Siberia. There was a lot of iron ore buried there. The companies we're working with are focusing only on oil fields, so I'd like to propose a steel mill construction project to you."
"You mean to build a steel mill in Siberia, not in Kazakhstan?"
"We already have your company's steel mill here, so if you make more mills in Kazakhstan, how will our companies compete with your company? You need to spread your ambitions in a bigger place."
"The Siberian project is tempting, but we cannot afford to hire people from remote areas, and the biggest problem is that we are concerned about logistics. If we were to increase the size of the steel mill in Kazakhstan, we could do more than that."
Although Siberia was a place of a bigger market, Mittal was hesitant to Youngho's proposal.
The issues Mittal pointed out were naturally expected.
The reason why Siberia's development had been slow despite its inexhaustible underground resources was that it was hampered by the lack of smooth logistics, severe weather, and the supply of workers to work in remote areas.
But that problem was before Kazakhstan's icebreakers were active on the Yenisei River.
"Would I have recommended building a steel mill in Siberia without taking those issues into account? First of all, there is the Yenisei River that could be used as a transport route of logistics, so it can be fully covered. Icebreakers are being deployed to allow four seasons of operation. Raw materials and finished goods would be more efficiently transported than using the land route if we used the Yenisei River. And there's no need to worry about manpower supply and demand. The city of Krasnoyarsk has a million people."
"Are you thinking of putting icebreakers in the Yenisei River?"
"You must be aware that the North Pole route has recently been opened. There's no need to worry about logistics because our icebreakers operate everywhere, whether it's the Yenisei or the Arctic Ocean."
"You've been already prepared for this."
"Unless you intend to build a steel mill in the very remote part of Siberia, we can do anything."
"I never thought of the Yenisei River and the city of Krasnoyarsk."
A place full of workers was Krasnoyarsk.
And using the Yenisei River could transport more raw materials and finished goods at a lower cost than on land.
"Your Highness. Can we make this unilateral decision without consulting the Russian government?"
"Of course, we have to sign an equity agreement with the Russian government. The right to resource development in Krasnoyarsk belongs to our royal family, so I'll arrange it for you."
"You are the only one who can make this kind of a deal with Putin, who is known for his particularity. I've been called M&A all my life, but I'm embarrassed to be called that before you."
"I was just lucky. It was because of the limitations of the inland country that led us to enter the canal project."
In fact, when he entered the Volga-Don Canal expansion project, Youngho himself thought it was reckless. It was a kind of adventure to invest in Russia, which might change at any moment. He also did not have other choices because the canal was the only way to the Black Sea.
When no one was willing to participate, the Kazakh royal family took the lead, opening the door for foreign investment in Russia.
That gave Putin absolute trust in the Kazakh royal family.
"That's not the only attraction for Krasnoyarsk's investment. Would you like to hear it because it's more attractive?"
Eager to hear Youngho's suggestion, Mittal leaned forward toward Youngho.
"In Krasnoyarsk, Chinese companies are no longer allowed to step in. They damaged the natural environment too much."
"Since when has Russia been so sensitive to environmental issues?"
"Hahaha… It's like a special law that only applies to Krasnoyarsk."
"It's new to me that there are no Chinese companies anymore."
"The citizens of Krasnoyarsk have a unique environmental awareness. They drove out Chinese companies."
***
Mittal immediately called in his staff from the headquarters to the royal territory.
It was a great business opportunity in Russia. He would be reluctant to start a business in Russia but now that the Kazakh royal family was supporting him, he was confident that the royal family would be his safety device.
"Your Highness, March weather in Kazakhstan is still as cold as winter. Then Siberia, which is in the north, must be even colder."
"It's not until April that Kazakhstan will start warming up because it's affected by the continental climate. It's not much different from the weather in Siberia, so be assured."
"I was born in India, so I had a hard winter in London even though it didn't fall below zero, but it was nothing compared to here."
"It's cold, but it's tolerable when you get used to it. I prefer the winter here. It's hunting season. Here and in Siberia, the wolf hunt is legal, so when do you think you can join us?"
"I'm more interested in viewing stones than in hunting."
"Really? That's great. You can pick up viewing stones in the taiga woods. If you're lucky, you'll also get diamond stones and meteorites."
"Really? Are there such precious things buried in the woods?"
"If you'd like, would you like to take a tour of the taiga forest with your survey team? I will have my local staff guide your company. Siberia is still winter, so it won't be easy to find them because the snow hasn't melted, but there must be some things that locals keep in their possession."
Youngho suggested it because he knew that Mittal had a hobby of collecting unusual items.
Many rich people would collect and display all sorts of unusual things in their houses, and so was Mittal.
"It's an irresistible temptation. If I can find diamonds and even meteorites, I'd rather ignore other schedules and go to the taiga forest anytime."
"I'm going to Russia, too. Why don't you come with me?"
Chairman Mittal was excited that Youngho was going to Russia soon.
"Will it be all right for you to vacate the palace?"
"I had a plan to go to Moscow anyway. I can stop by Krasnoyarsk for a moment. Let me introduce you to a local person who can help you with your collection."
Mittal could not hide his excitement as being introduced to a local person to help his collection which was equivalent in getting the collection he wanted.
The reason why Youngho was visiting Moscow was that the consortium companies for the Trans-Siberian Train Project had completed due diligence on the site, they decided to sign the contract in Moscow.
If the deal was signed, the development project for the Krasnoyarsk would be able to start immediately.
The development of the taiga region was stopped because Youngho was waiting for foreign companies to seal the deal to modernize cross-country trains. If unexpected problems were found during the on-site inspection, some of the consortium companies could give up.
Now that the Trans-Siberian Railway project was sealed, the stumbling block was almost gone.
Although three of the companies involved in the Siberian development project were observers, they could start the project only after Youngho signed the contract because the Kazakh royal family was in charge of the Siberian development business.
After signing the contract, the company planned to start taking over Chinese machinery companies and developing oil fields.
However, if Chairman Mittal started the steel mill business at the same time, Putin would be exuberated.
Since the Crimean crisis, foreign investors were nowhere to be seen due to economic sanctions in the West, but since the start of the canal expansion project, foreign investment had been flooding into Russia.
Considering the recent rise in Putin's approval ratings, the return of foreign investors also played a part in the role.
It was all thanks to the Kazakh royal family. On top of that, if a steelmaking business began, Putin would dance with joy as steelmaking was a business that required a large number of workers. It would lead to job creation for many Russians.