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KIRKENES, Norway, June 4 (Itar-Tass) - Russia pursues only “peaceful and pragmatic” goals in the Euro-Arctic region, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev told the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation, or NRK, on Tuesday.
“We want to use the potential of the region for the benefit of our citizens, and, of course, citizens of other neighboring states,” he stressed. According to Medvedev, a major part of Russia’s hydrocarbon revenues are Arctic revenues. “According to estimates of economists, revenues from the use of all Arctic possibilities account for ten percent of Russia’s entire balance of revenues,” he said. That is why, in his words, Russia is interested in practical cooperation shaped in the format of concrete projects.
Touching on the role of China in the Arctic Council, the Russian prime minister said that the rules of the game are the domain of the Arctic states. “There is trust to China, but the rules are set by us, i.e. Arctic states,” he said. In his words, the Arctic Council member states should have unquestionable priority in taking decisions about the use of the resources of this region. “It is absolutely natural, this is our region, we live here. This is our native land,” he stressed.
At the same time, he noted that there is no need to “cut off” other countries. The fact that China and some other states enjoy the observer status in the Arctic Council is a normal thing, in his words. “It is normal, we are interested in fruitful cooperation,” he added.