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Preparations for events under the chairmanship of the Russian Federation in the Arctic Council in 2021–2023, the concept of the chairmanship of the Russian Federation in the Arctic Council were included in the agenda of the first meeting of the organizing committee, which was chaired by Deputy Prime Minister – Plenipotentiary of the President in the Far Eastern Federal District Yuri Trutnev.

Meeting of the organizing committee for the preparation and maintenance of Russia’s chairmanship in the Arctic Council in 2021-2023

“In 2021–2023, in accordance with the principle of rotation, the post of chairman of the Arctic Council is transferred to Russia. Today the Russian Federation is leading in a number of areas related to the development of the Arctic. The development of the Northern Sea Route, science and technology, environmental protection, defense and security issues, the development of Arctic deposits – this is an incomplete list of those areas in which Russian specialists are working. The President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin has set tasks for us related to the development of the Northern Sea Route, an increase in cargo traffic to 80 million tons per year. The implementation of these tasks will require the development of port infrastructure, communications, forecasting systems for ice and meteorological conditions, rescue systems and ship maintenance. In addition, this work will require efforts in the field of environmental protection and implementation of the sustainable development goals of the Arctic region. In all these areas, it is possible and necessary to develop international cooperation, to involve our foreign partners – scientists, experts, representatives of business and public organizations in the interaction, ”Yuri Trutnev said opening the meeting.

The concept of chairmanship was discussed, namely the issues of sustainable development of the Arctic region, strengthening of the Arctic Council, as well as protection of national interests outlined in the international sections of the Fundamentals of State Policy of the Russian Federation in the Arctic for the period up to 2035 and the Strategy for the Development of the Arctic Zone of the Russian Federation and ensuring national security for period until 2035.

Special attention was paid to the elaboration of a “roadmap” of measures aimed at increasing the efficiency of Russian participation in the activities of the Arctic Council.

As Adviser to the President, Deputy Chairman – Executive Secretary of the Organizing Committee Anton Kobyakov noted in his speech, for Russia, holding high-level international events poses the challenge of solving even more ambitious problems and only comprehensive measures and consolidated efforts of federal control and supervisory bodies, regional authorities will improve the infrastructure Arctic zone.

“For us, the chairmanship of the Arctic Council is new opportunities for international cooperation and economic development of the region. In total, the plan of the main events of the chairmanship envisages holding 88 events, of which 50 are official, 38 are under the auspices of the Arctic Council. 17 federal agencies, 11 constituent entities of the Federation, 12 NGOs and educational institutions, 3 large corporations (Rosatom, Sovkomflot, Norilsk Nickel) are involved in organizing the events. The total number of participants in official events alone will be about 12.5 thousand people. I am sure this site will contribute to the development of an effective set of measures to achieve the main tasks in the development of the Arctic zone, ”said Anton Kobyakov.

One of the most important issues on the agenda was the discussion of coordination activities for the preparation and implementation of the program of events. Organizational issues were considered, including the distribution of responsibilities of federal executive bodies and other organizations in preparation for ensuring Russia’s chairmanship in the Arctic Council.

The Ministry for the Development of the Russian Far East, together with the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, relevant federal ministries and departments, developed an action plan for Russia’s chairmanship of the Arctic Council in 2021–2023. “When preparing the plan, we proceeded from the fact that the chairmanship of the Arctic Council for Russia is, first of all, an opportunity to promote its interests at the international level in accordance with the presidential decrees“ On the fundamentals of state policy of the Russian Federation in the Arctic for the period up to 2035 ”and“ On strategies for the development of the Arctic zone of the Russian Federation and ensuring national security for the period up to 2035 ”, – said the Minister for the Development of the Far East and the Arctic Alexei Chekunkov in his speech.

As part of Russia’s chairmanship in the Arctic Council, it is planned to discuss a wide range of issues. The event agenda is divided into ten thematic blocks. In connection with the active actions of a number of Western countries, international events dedicated to the prospects for using the Northern Sea Route and issues of international logistics are acquiring special relevance. According to the head of the Ministry for the Development of the Russian Far East, the technological agenda may become one of the cross-cutting topics of all blocks. Within the framework of a number of blocks, events dedicated to Arctic technologies will be held. These are blocks for international and scientific cooperation in the Arctic, economic cooperation, infrastructure development and sustainable shipping, climate change and environmental issues, and emergency prevention.

Expert groups on healthcare, social, economic and cultural issues, working groups on sustainable development of the Arctic Council have been formed on the platform of the Higher School of Economics.

An important platform for the development of economic cooperation should be the Arctic Economic Council – an organization of business circles, which includes up to three representatives from the member states and permanent participants of the Arctic Council. Representatives from Russia are represented by companies that have practical experience in implementing large projects in the Arctic – PJSC Novatek and State Corporation Rosatom. The possibility of forming the secretariat of the Russian part of the Arctic Economic Council was discussed.

The event was attended by Deputy Chief of Staff of the Government Elmir Tagirov, Minister for the Development of the Far East and the Arctic Alexei Chekunkov, Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Alexander Kozlov, Vice-President of the Russian Academy of Sciences Valery Bondur, Ambassador-at-Large of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia Nikolai Korchunov, Special Representative of the President for International cooperation in the Arctic and Antarctic Artur Chilingarov, Deputy Chairman of the Management Board – Director for Marine Operations, Transportation and Logistics of PJSC Novatek Yevgeny Ambrosov, Deputy General Director of Rosatom State Corporation – Director of the Northern Sea Route Directorate Vyacheslav Ruksha, Head of the Federal Service for Hydrometeorology and Monitoring environment Igor Shumakov, representatives of federal ministries and departments, the expert community.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and or sentence structure not be perfect.

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