The updated strategic plan “In the North – Live! 2.0 ”and the“ New Murmansk ”project as instruments of restraining the outflow of population from the Arctic Circle were presented by the Governor of the Murmansk Region, Andrey Chibis, to the participants of the IV international session“ Cooperation in the Arctic ”. The event was organized with the support of the Government of the Murmansk Region under the auspices of Russia"s chairmanship of the Arctic Council in 2021-2023.
The session was held in Murmansk on November 24 in a hybrid intramural and extramural format. The hall of the congress hotel "Meridian" was attended by Andrey Chibis, Consul General of Norway in Murmansk Astrid Nerum, representatives of the regional government, the regional Duma, federal structures, heads of enterprises and organizations of the region, scientific and educational institutions, heads of municipalities, representatives of local authorities self-government, students of MASU and MSTU. Representatives of the Government of the Russian Federation, the Federation Council, the International Barents Secretariat and the regions of the Barents cooperation, foreign diplomats took part in the discussion via video communication channels.
Welcoming the participants in the session, Governor Andrei Chibis called the fight against the outflow of population from the North a key item on the Arctic agenda, requiring the development of joint decisions.
“How to make sure that the number of people who live and work in the Arctic does not decrease, but increases? This is a challenge for all countries with northern territories without exception – to create interesting, comfortable conditions for life and active human development, ”said the head of the Murmansk region.
During the presentation of the updated strategic plan “In the North – Live! 2.0 "Andrey Chibis noted that the government of the Murmansk region considers it as part of the overall strategy for the development of the Arctic zone of the Russian Federation, and the ultimate goal of the plan is to reduce the outflow of population from the Arctic. The head of the region emphasized that the plan "In the North – Live!" formed based on the opinions of the northerners themselves.
Among the pillars of the plan, Andrei Chibis mentioned Arctic preferences for business, the implementation of large investment projects in the region, the development of the Northern Sea Route, the expansion of the Far Eastern Hectare program into the Arctic, and the revival of housing construction. In addition, the implementation of environmental programs and the introduction of green technologies, digitalization, tourism development, support of indigenous peoples, international cooperation in the field of education and culture became important aspects of the regional development strategy.
The central place in the work of the section "Stronger Together: Northern Cities" was taken by the presentation of the "New Murmansk" project. Presenting the project for the renovation of the port territory in the regional center, Andrey Chibis noted that the renewal of the urban environment is one of the most important tools for changing the quality of life in the region.
Summarizing the results of the session, Andrey Chibis called the Murmansk region a real development area.
“Thanks to the Arctic Development Strategy approved by the President, thanks to what we ourselves are doing today, we have an opportunity for self-realization of youth – youth from all over the country, from all over the world. It is fundamentally important for all of us to find and implement a set of solutions together so that the North, the Arctic, and the Murmansk region become attractive for life and work. This is a very difficult task, but what we are doing today as part of the implementation of the Arctic Strategy are steps towards this. These are new jobs, new investments, investments in the education system and the urban environment – all that excite our people the most. Colleagues from other northern countries talk about the same challenges, first of all, about the outflow of the population. Our task is to reverse this trend. And it"s very cool that today the Murmansk region has become a platform for international interaction on the topic of cooperation in the Arctic. Because the Arctic is a priority for the whole world today, ”the governor summed up.