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Arctic Forum’s task is to change perception of region as source of raw material — official

January 18, 18:28 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The Arctic: Territory of Dialogue Forum is a key international platform for discussing problems and future of the Arctic area at the global level
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© Vladimir Smirnov/TASS

MOSCOW, January 18. /TASS/. The program of the Arctic: Territory of Dialogue Forum, due in Arkhangelsk on March 29-30, includes discussions not only of the region’s economy, but also of the social aspects. One of the key tasks is to prove that the Arctic is not only stock of raw material, Governor of the Arkhangelsk region Igor Orlov said on Wednesday.

"One of the tasks the forum is facing is to change the perception of the Arctic as a big stock of hydrocarbons," he told reporters. "The spectrum of aspects to discuss at the forum is named as "Human in the Arctic," which is not only mining, but a much wider spectrum."

"At this time, we are speaking about the Arctic in the aspect of "how to live there," not of "how to extract resources from there"," he continued. "This would be the key topic at the forum."

Besides the economy agenda, which cannot be dropped, the forum will offer platforms to discuss the environment, education, support of indigenous and minority peoples, the governor said.

Russia’s Foreign Ministry’s Ambassador-at-Large for Arctic Cooperation Vladimir Barbin said the forum organizers hoped Russia’s President Vladimir Putin would traditionally participate in the Forum.

"This forum will take place for the fourth time already, it is the main platform in Russia for discussing current problems of the Arctic and international cooperation in the region," he said. "Traditionally, the Russian president participates in the forum’s events."

"The participants will pay special attention to history, culture, inter-ethnic communications, life and activities of people in the northern latitudes, and of course to education of the indigenous and minority peoples, to professional training for major Arctic projects and for the territories located in high altitudes," head of the Northern (Arctic) Federal University named after Lomonosov, Elena Kudryashova, told reporters. "Much attention will be paid to joint scientific projects, joint expeditions, and, we believe, the forum will be able to give a new impetus to development of the international cooperation in major directions of people’s activities in the Arctic."

Several events will be organized during the forum: a meeting of the state committee on development of the Arctic, a meeting of the Arctic municipal authorities, and a youth forum.

"It would be already the third big (youth - TASS) form, which Rosmolodezh (youth affairs authority) is preparing this year jointly with the Arkhangelsk region’s government," the university’s head said. "We plan to welcome here about 180 students, young scientists, and young entrepreneurs from all over Russia, who are ready to live and work in the Arctic."

About Forum

The Arctic: Territory of Dialogue Forum is a key international platform for discussing problems and future of the Arctic area at the global level. The forum is supported by the Russian government and its objective is to unite efforts of the international community for effective development of the Arctic and for higher living standards for the people living there.

The first forum took place in 2010 and was devoted to modern problems of the Arctic region. The second forum in 2011 focused on formation of the Arctic transport systems, and the event in 2013 touched upon environmental safety.

This year, the event’s key topic is "human in the Arctic." The forum’s organizer is the Roscongress Foundation.

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