The Fort Ross Dialogue is held on an annual basis in California with support of Transneft, Sovcomflot, and Chevron Corporation. For the first time since 2012, the conference took place in the Russian territory at the initiative of Transneft and turned into a venue of robust engagement and opinion exchange between leading diplomats, experts, and representatives of culture and business from both countries.
Along with representatives of the companies that co-organized the summit (President of Transneft Nikolay Tokarev and Vice President Mikhail Margelov, First Deputy Director General of Sovcomflot Nikolay Kolesnikov, and Chevron Vice President for Europe, Eurasia, Middle East, and Africa Ian MacDonald), also participating in the conference were Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation Sergey Ryabkov, U.S. Ambassador to Russia John Tefft, Russian President’s Special Envoy for International Cultural Cooperation Mikhail Shvydkoy, Pskov Region Governor Andrey Turchak, Tyumen Region Governor Vladimir Yakushev, and representatives of the Russian International Affairs Council (RIAC), Center for Strategic and International Studies (Washington, D.C.), U.S. Russia Business Council, and Council for U.S.–Russia Relations.
The first day of the conference was dedicated to historic heritage conservation and the development of cultural cooperation. On the second day, the participants focused on interaction between the two nations in the field of energy.
In the words of Transneft President Nikolay Tokarev, the existing experience shows that the joint historical heritage at the crossing of cultures is the best reference point for reaching mutual understanding and general attraction between the two nations. Transneft President underscored that the bilateral conference is called to expand and develop the Russian–U.S. contacts and to serve as an effective diplomatic tool. “Geopolitics and international cooperation is an integral element of Transneft operations. We take our objectives in this field as seriously as our industrial projects, opting for a scientific approach as we address these challenges,” said Mr Tokarev. He noted specifically that “for Transneft, as an infrastructure company in charge of pipeline transportation of oil over the territory of Russia and abroad, the relation between energy and geopolitics is absolutely evident.”
The Fort Ross Dialogue is a Russia–U.S. forum, annually (since 2012) gathering politicians, workers of culture, experts, and business people. In 2017, the forum for the first time works in a bilateral geographical format, the conference partners being Transneft, Sovcomflot, and Chevron Neftegaz Inc.