Murmansk governor takes on cross-border cooperation
Marina Kovtun becomes member of the Northwest Russian Council on Cross-Border Cooperation.
Kovtun, who was appointed new governor of Murmansk Oblast last month, is on the list of council members announced this week by presidential aide to Northwest Russia Nikolai Vinnichenko.
The council is to help coordinate regional authorities in issues of cross-border cooperation and international relations, a press release from the Murmansk administration reads. It includes representatives of federal authorities involved in cross-border relations, as well as leaders of the Northwest Russian federal subjects.
Northwest Russia includes 11 subjects, of which five are located along the Schengen border. Murmansk Oblast borders on Norway and Finland and has a total of three international border crossing checkpoints, the Borisgleb, the Lotta and the Salla.
The level of cross-border activities is on the increase, and the number of border crossers in 2011 boomed on all the three border checkpoints. On the Borisgleb/Storskog station, the number of travellers in 2011 increased by more than 25 percent to a total of more than 190,000. By 2014, the number is predicted to increase further to about 400,000, an analysis from the Norwegian police indicates.
Murmansk Oblast is also actively involved in cross-border cooperation within the frames of the Barents Cooperation.
Read more about Murmansk and its role in cross-border cooperation in the Barents Review 2012, a publication from the Norwegian Barents Secretariat.