Thomas Nilsen

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Thomas Nilsen is editor of BarentsObserver and is based at the desk in Kirkenes, northern Norway. He has been working for the Norwegian Barents Secretariat since 2003. Before, he worked 12 years for the Bellona Foundation’s Russian study group, focusing on nuclear safety issues and general environmental challenges in northern areas and the Arctic.

Thomas has been travelling extensively in the Barents Region and northern Russia since the late 80’s working for different media and organizations. He is also a guide at sea and in remote locations in the Russian north for various groups and regularly lectures on security issues and socio-economic development in the Barents Region. Thomas Nilsen studied at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology.

Content by Thomas Nilsen

“It is more important for us to sell quality and unique experiences than cheap products for mass tourism,” says Kåre Tannvik, adventure developer with Kirkenes Snowhotel. Weak ruble and krone will not alone boost tourism to Russia and Norway.

Like the Russian ruble, the Norwegian krone is diving with falling oil-prices. Down more than 4 percent on Tuesday to parity with the Swedish krone.

Barents entrepreneurship expert Heidi Andreassen believes trade and investments across the borders in the north are in jeopardy as Russia’s ruble is tumbling again in what seems like a market in panic.

Russia’s central bank announces Tuesday a 6,5 percent rise in interest rates to 17 percent in a move to defend a ruble that Monday lost nearly 10 percent per dollar to 64,4.

This screenshot of flightradar24 taken Sunday morning shows how airplanes from Great Britain are queuing up for landing at Rovaniemi, Ivalo and Kittilä airports. 80 aircrafts brought in 15,000 passengers this weekend.

Iron ore miners all over the Barents Region are troubled by drop in prices. Northland Resources outside Pajala in northern Sweden field for bankruptcy Monday morning.

The Mi-8 helicopter fell down just after takeoff from the Trebs and Titov oilfields on the Nenets tundra on Sunday.

Then it is decided. Pyhäjoki nuclear power plant south of Oulu can be built with Russian reactor technology.

A Rosatom own mining company will start production of lead and zinc ores on the southern part of Novaya Zemlya where the Soviet Union made seven giant underground nuclear explosions.

A golden glow in the far away horizon for some few minutes and then gone. Polar night has come to most parts of the Barents Region.