Former naval base of Liinakhamari nearly ownerless

Liinakhamari, Murmansk Oblast

One third of the premises in the port of Liinakhamari have no owner, a recent survey shows. Parts of the former naval base could be rented out.


A commission from the Murmansk Regional Ministry of Property Relations recently visited Liinakhamari to make an inventory of the buildings in the village. The commission discovered that nearly 33 percent of all the buildings were abandoned and derelict, reports.

The port of Liinakhamari in the outlet of the Pechenga fjord has lain idle since the Coast Guard moved its vessels out of the area a few years back, and the buildings and quays have started to decay.

According to the Federal Service for Registration, Cadastre and Cartography, the total area of Liinakhamari amounts to 120 hectares. Only 5 hectares of this is registered in the State cadastral registration.

If the buildings in the village are transferred to municipal ownership, the municipality of Pechenga could earn nearly €8500 annually from leasing them out. Another €9700 is lost because land plot borders have not been properly established, making them illegal to sell or lease.

The area surrounding Liinakhamari is part of the plans for the establishment of a Norwegian-Russian economic and industrial zone from Jarfjord in Norway to the Pechenga fjord, the so-called Pomor Zone. The plans were much discussed three-four years ago, but have not been an issue in recent meetings between Norwegian and Russian officials. Maybe the new initiatives from Russia on solving questions around ownership of the premises can bring new life to the plans.

The Pomor Zone is based on an idea inked by former Statoil CEO Arve Johnsen, and was believed to play a key role in the development of offshore oil and gas resources in the Norwegian-Russian Barents Sea.

Liinakhamari belonged to Finland from 1920 to 1944. On August 16, 1940, the Norwegian Crown Princess Märtha, the Princesses Ragnhild and Astrid and Prince Harald, now King of Norway, left for the United States from the port of Liinakhamari after the outbreak of World War II.