Irina Sokolova: Effective legal base is required for arctic projects
11:53 13 ноября 2014
Категории: News in English
The second International Arctic Legal Forum «Sustainable Development of the Arctic: Legal Aspects» was opened in Saint Petersburg, in the building of the presidential library named after Boris Yeltsin. It was organized by the government of Yamal-Nenets Autonomous Okrug and the Institute of Legislation and Comparative Law under the Government of the Russian Federation.
Among the participants of the forum there are representatives of the State Duma and the Federation Council, governments and parliaments of the regions, scientists and legislators. In the beginning of the meeting a deputy chairperson of the State Duma of the Russian Federation Vladimir Vasilyev underlined that the forum should become the platform for coordination of legal issues in the sphere of development of the Arctic and arctic territories.
The Vice Governor of Yamal-Nenets Autonomous Okrug Irina Sokolova spoke within the forum. As she notes, Yamal is in much a pathbreaker in development of arctic latitudes. Such technological, organizational, humanitarian, scientific and legal decisions, which have no analogues in the whole world, were started exactly here and are embodied to life during the latest tens of years.
According to her information, activity of the regional government in Yamal is based on three main principles. The first is to preserve culture, traditions and economic activity of indigenous ethnic minorities of the North. Owing to this approach, the number of indigenous inhabitants of Yamal grew on 11 percent during 10 years.
The second principle is to provide ecological safety: 79 thousand of 770 thousand square kilometers of the area of the region are specially protected territories; each tenth square meter in Yamal is reserved.
The third principle is to observe balance of interests of industrial companies and indigenous ethnic minorities. Every year the government of the region signs agreements with large companies. All sides of socioeconomic interaction are taken into consideration in these documents. Each industrial project obligatorily passes through the procedure of public hearings in tundra communities.
Full-scale investment projects, which have significance for the whole country, are fulfilled in Yamal. Thus, building of the Northern Latitudinal Route will give approach to the world ocean for many regions of Russia; it will assist to development of the Northern Sea Route.
Effective legal base is required for fulfillment of such projects. It has been already formed on the regional level; however, it needs to perfect legislation on the federal level. In particular, it needs to refine legal mechanisms of interaction between the business and the power, including, on the basis of governmental-private partnership.
Also Irina Sokolova notes that improvement of life of indigenous population is referred to the number of priority directions within the Strategy of development of the Russian Arctic zone. More than 30 normative acts regulating support of indigenous peoples and protection of primordial environment and traditional economic activity were taken in Yamal during the latest years. Legal base in the sphere of reindeer husbandry was created. It is economic basis of life for many thousands northerners. The law was taken in the region – one of its tasks is to make reindeer-herding enterprises and private reindeer herders equal in their rights. As Irina Sokolova notes, the federal legislation does not consider specifics of Yamal, and the regional budget has to take many risks on itself.
The program of the forum includes the teleconference with regions of the Arctic zone of Russia, the sections on human dimension of the Arctic – the society and the law, on cooperation between the state, municipalities and business in sustainable development of the macro-region of the Russian Arctic, on use of resource potential of the Arctic – legal aspects and innovative approaches and on the Arctic in the light of international law. The forum will end with the final sitting, as it is told to a correspondent of IA «Sever-Press» in the press-service of the governor of Yamal.