The President of the Russian Federation has made a speech at the plenary session “Humans in the Arctic”, which took place in the framework of the International Forum “Arctic: Territory of Dialogue”.
“Arkhangelsk is closely connected with the events and individuals that have opened the polar latitudes to the world. We will mark one of such “polar” events this year. I am referring to the 85th anniversary of the famous Otto Schmidt expedition, which for the first time covered the route from the port of Arkhangelsk to the Pacific Ocean within one navigation season, launching regular navigation along the coast of Siberia, the legendary Northern Sea Route”, stated Vladimir Putin in his opening remarks. The President also mentioned that the Arctic is a region whose wellbeing determines the global climate, a treasure trove of unique nature and, of course, a region with a huge economic potential and opportunities.
“We aim to ensure the sustainable development of the Arctic, create a modern infrastructure, develop natural resources, strengthen the industrial potential, improve the quality of life for the indigenous Northern people, maintain their unique culture and traditions and provide government assistance towards these goals. However, these goals must not be viewed separately from the task of preserving the biological diversity and the fragile ecosystems of the Arctic”, said the President. “It is gratifying that the protection of the Arctic environment is a key priority of international cooperation in this region, including research cooperation. Academic cooperation and the exchange of experience and programmes are extremely important, considering the large-scale plans for the development of this region, particularly within large international projects”.
According to the Russian leader, the revised state programme for the development of the Russian Arctic will include forming a block of modern research and technological solutions designed specifically for the harsh Arctic conditions, improving the environmental monitoring system and developing offshore deposits. Special attention will be paid to the Northern Sea Route.
“I have already instructed the Government to work through the issues of creating a separate entity which will be in charge of the integrated development of the Northern Sea Route and contiguous core areas”, communicated Vladimir Putin.
Finnish President Sauli Niinistö continued the session with a speech dedicated to the problem of global warming. The President of Iceland Guðni Jóhannesson in his welcome address stressed the importance of international cooperation, placing particular emphasis on key sea-related aspects – navigation and fishing.
Northern Arctic Federal University, having hosted the International Arctic Forum “Arctic: Territory of Dialogue” for the second time, has now become the permanent venue for the event which will be held biennially.