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Steep decline in border crossing

Since mid-2014, the number of people crossing the Norwegian-Russian border has gradually shrunk.

The number of people crossing the Norwegian-Russian border continues to drop.

Figures from the Norwegian police show that the negative trend in traveling between the two countries continues. In September, a total of 19392 people crossed the checkpoint of Storskog, a decline of 25,8 percent compared with the same period in 2014.

So far this year, a total of 183496 people have crossed the border, a year-on-year decrease of 24,5 percent.

The downturn in travelling comes after several years of increase. Between 2009 and 2013, the border traffic almost trippled to more than 320,000 people. The shift started in spring 2013, first with a stagnation in the figures in spring and later with a major decline in fall.

The Norwegian-Russian border is 196 km long and has only one border-crossing point, the Storskog-Borisoglebsk checkpoints.

The negative trend in traveling coincides with the weakening of the ruble and the worsening in relations between Russia and its neighbors.

As illustrated by figures from Patchwork Barents the regional dataporta, the trend is similar on the Russian-Finnish border. After years of increase, border traffic between the northern Finnish region of Lapland and Murmansk in 2014 dropped by almost 15 percent.