Russian President Dmitry Medvedev toured Silicon Valley to see “the origins of success”, and came away expressing optimism that his country will also be able to adopt a high-tech economy that would give everyone a chance to get ahead.
His visit on Wednesday to the high-tech capital was bolstered by an announcement by Cisco Systems Inc. that it would invest $1 billion over 10 years to help foster high-tech innovation in Russia.
The Russian leader is on a U.S. tour that will eventually take him to Washington for meetings with President Barack Obama.
Mr. Medvedev has said he wants to bring more high-tech innovation to Russia's oil-dependent economy, and create the country's own Silicon Valley outside Moscow.
“Russia is trying to become an open country,” he said during a speech at Stanford University, the last stop on his visit. “Open for investment, for trade, for joint projects in any sector of public life, and of course in economics.”
Mr. Medvedev kicked off his tour in a meeting with Evan Williams and Biz Stone, the co-founders of Twitter, the popular microblogging site.
At Twitter's San Francisco headquarters, Mr. Medvedev set up a Twitter account under the name “KremlinRussia” and sent his first tweet.
The debut was in Russian- “Hello everyone. I am now in Twitter, and this is my first message.”
As part of his Silicon Valley tour, Mr. Medvedev met earlier on Wednesday with Apple Inc. CEO Steve Jobs in Cupertino.