Rogaland County, with Stavanger which is often called “oil capital” or “energy capital” of Norway, possesses a unique competence in developing oil and gas industry and this experience could be highly demanded by the Northern Russian regions waiting for a start of big Arctic offshore race.
A few years ago the leaders of two counties discussed a possibility of signing full-scale cooperation agreement. In the mean-time these intentions now start with a Memorandum of understanding between the Rogaland and Arkhangelsk. Rogaland has also established cooperation with other Russian Arctic regions – Murmansk and Nenets Autonomous Okrug. Since both Rogaland and Arkhangelsk have obtained the new Governors recently their intentions to reload cooperative relations seem much more visible.
Vice-Governor of Rogaland county Terje Halleland and his colleague, the Vice-Governor of Arkhangelsk oblast Alexei Alsufjev, had a meeting in Arkhangelsk on Thursday and came to a conclusion that such agreement is to be signed in the nearest future. Most likely this can happen in September when Rogaland plans to send to Arkhangelsk a political delegation headed by the Governor.
Last year Rogaland County put forward an initiative of arranging a cooperation between the Norwegian and Russian regions related to oil and gas activity in the Arctic. As a part of this initiative the Norwegian company Sigra group and Arkhangelsk association “Sozvezdie” have started a new project of studying the local industries related to oil and gas sector and their possibilities for establishing business contacts with companies in Stavanger. The results of this work can make a basis for new cooperative agreement between Rogaland and Arkhangelsk.
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 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.