The economic development in the High North requires good transport solutions across national borders. Experts from the four countries have now started studying transport challenges and cross-border transport routes on roads, railway, sea and air transport.
National transport plans, strategic studies and bilateral studies have identified a need for a more integrated approach to the transport system across borders in the Barents region. A joint plan is a natural step to follow up the different studies and plans. The expert group will come up with a suggestion to a joint transport plan for long-term development of the infrastructure in the Barents Region.
The international expert group Joint Barents Transport Plan is led by Torbjørn Naimak, Head of Norwegian Public Roads Administration’s Northern Region. “We have now started work in the international group and are on a tight schedule. All the countries have their mind set on doing a good job”, Naimak says in a press release.
The group will formulate general strategies on how an effective, sustainable and robust transport system should be developed. They will pinpoint bottle necks and barriers for border crossing transport, both on technical and administrative nature and point out the main directions for development of infrastructure on the basis of predicted transport volumes in the border crossing Corridors.
A declaration will be presented for the transport ministers to sign, based on advice from the expert group.
MURMANSK: Ecological groups gathered on Kola Peninsula fear that Barents nature will be the looser after Oslo decided to call off the environmental minister’s Moscow meeting in response to Russia’s annexation of Crimea.
TROMSØ: Since the first five specimens of snow crab were found in the Barents Sea in 1996, the population has exploded. There is now ten times as much snow crab than king crab in the area, and scientists are just starting to find out how this new species has adopted to life in the Barents Sea.
The nuclear-powered icebreaker Yamal today leaves port of Murmansk for a two-month expedition to the Russian Arctic. The aim for the expedition is to study ice and weather conditions in the area to prepare for future oil and gas projects.
The National Archives Service of Finland and the Sámi Archives have proposed including the Skolt Sámi archives in the UNESCO Memory of the World Register. Only 301 items have been listed in the register so far.
The current situation in Ukraine makes cross-border cooperation with the neighboring countries even more important, Barents Secretariat leader Rune Rafaelsen says. At the same time, Norway has joined NATO’s condemnation of Russia’s military escalation on the Crimea peninsula.
Board member Amund Trellevik in the press network fears entry-denial of Kremlin’s controversial propaganda-journalist Dmitry Kiselyov could be retaliated by refusing Norwegian journalists access to Russia.