New Delhi :
The St. Petersburg International Economic Forum will have an ‘Arctic: Territory of Dialogue’ stand dedicated to the Arctic agenda for the first time when the Forum is held on 15–18 June 2022. The stand’s business programme includes over 15 events, some of which will be held as part of scheduled events for Russia’s chairmanship in the Arctic Council in 2021–2023, which are being organized by the Roscongress Foundation.
“During the stand’s events, leading specialists and experts will discuss issues concerning the economic development of the region, ecology, tourism, and creative industries as well as the development of the Northern Sea Route and human capital in the Arctic, including the indigenous peoples of the North. A number of agreements will also be signed at the stand,” said Anton Kobyakov, Adviser to the Russian President and Executive Secretary of the Organizing Committee for Russia’s Chairmanship in the Arctic Council.
One of the stand’s main sessions will be the Conference on the Development of Telecommunications and Digitalization in the Arctic. The participants will discuss the introduction of digital technologies in the region, the use of telemedicine and unmanned vehicles as well as other topics. The Shipbuilding and Ship Repair in the Arctic Workshop will address ship repair services in the Arctic and the increase in the number of high ice class ships. In addition, discussions will be held as part of the Creative Business Forum at the SPIEF 2022 on prospects for creative industries in the northern territories.
In addition, the ‘Arctic: Territory of Dialogue’ stand will host the session ‘Northern Sea Route: International Transport Corridor’. The participants will discuss the impact this route is having on the economy of Russia’s Arctic zone, opportunities for developing individual territories using the Northern Sea Route given the pressure from sanctions, as well as prospects for strengthening partnerships with countries that are friendly to Russia.
“Today, more than 3,000 investment projects are being implemented in the Arctic and the Far East using state support mechanisms, and cargo traffic along the Northern Sea Route is increasing every year. This route is becoming even more important against the backdrop of pressure from external sanctions and the transformation of the economy. Together with the Forum participants, we will discuss the most sustainable and effective solutions that can solve transport and logistics problems and ensure the safety of navigation as well as the timely and required volume of deliveries to residents of remote Far Eastern and Northern regions,” Minister for the Development of the Russian Far East and Arctic Alexey Chekunkov said.
As part of the Think Arctic project during the session ‘International Cooperation as a Guarantee for the Sustainable Development of the Arctic’, the discussion participants will discuss the region’s importance in international politics and economics considering the growing accessibility of the Arctic as well as its role in the context of the global energy transition.
“Given the temporary pause in the Arctic Council’s work, it is crucial for Russia, as the largest Arctic state, to continue its work to ensure the sustainable development of the Arctic for the benefit of the people living in the region. It should be understood that such a ‘freeze’ signifies the actual suspension of the implementation of a number of the Council’s projects, which have a pronounced social orientation and focus on the indigenous population of the Arctic. In the current situation, we are open to the earliest possible resumption of the Arctic Council’s activities as well as collaboration with all states that take a constructive approach to interaction with our country, including non-regional ones,” said Nikolay Korchunov, Chairman of the Senior Arctic Officials and Ambassador-at-Large of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The ‘Arctic: Territory of Dialogue’ Forum will also hold a separate discussion about the investment potential of the Arctic. The heads of nine Arctic regions of Russia will hold presentations for investors, while the session ‘Investment Projects in the Arctic: Preferential Regimes’ will include a discussion about the world’s largest special economic zone, climatic features of the Arctic regions, and specific regional aspects of investment.
As part of the business programme, the stand will also host thematic sessions on tourism, nature conservation, and science. The panel session ‘Arctic: Territory of Tourism’ will focus on prospects for the development of the tourism sector in the Arctic, the demand for tours to the Arctic, and the impact of the cost of such travel on the tourist flow. Participants in the session ‘Climate Change Trends and Risk Management in the Arctic’ will discuss the state of permafrost as a result of climate change and scientific research in the Arctic, including the use of scientific expedition ships and the ice-resistant self-propelled North Pole platform. In addition, the session ‘The Role of World-Class Scientific and Educational Centres in Implementing Arctic projects will address cooperation among regions, universities, and scientific organizations in scientific research in the Arctic zone, while the Russian Geographical Society’s session ‘Science and Strategic Decisions in the Arctic’ will focus on the role of science in making strategic management decisions about the human presence in Russia’s Arctic zone.
The session ‘Human Resources as a Factor in the Arctic’s Development: How to Develop and Retain Staff’ will look at retaining skilled professionals in the Arctic region, including workers from among the indigenous peoples of the North. The experts taking part in the event will answer questions about what kind of people the region needs, what federal projects can help attract employees, and what needs to be done to attract manpower to the Arctic zone.
During the panel session ‘Arctic Regions: Dialogue on Integrated Security’, senior officials from Russia’s regions and the Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations will exchange experience about how the regions function in the event of potential and the most typical emergencies for the Russian Arctic. In addition, the discussion participants will also come up with effective mechanisms for interaction between the Ministry of Emergency Situations and the regions.
The stand covered a total area of 300 square metres on the first floor of pavilion G of the ExpoForum Convention and Exhibition Centre. It will be divided into several zones, with the main ones being the Lecture Hall and the document signing area. In addition, visitors to the stand will have access to a bar, a networking area, as well as spaces dedicated to the Northern Sea Route, Russia’s chairmanship in the Arctic Council, and other topics.