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HELSINKI, December 12. /ITAR-TASS/. Signing of a Russian-Finnish intergovernmental agreement on joint icebreaker assistance to ships in the Baltic Sea would help ensure safety of navigation in the region, Konstantin Palnikov, the director of the department for state policies in the field of maritime and inland waterway transport of the Russian Transport Ministry said here Thursday.
“Drafting of an agreement between Russia and Finland on joint icebreaker assistance will enable our two countries to ensure safety of navigation in the Baltic Sea and to maintain efficiency of operations of seaports in either country,” he said.
The draft was endorsed by Russia’s Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev at the end of November. He told the Transport Ministry then to hold talks with Finland and to sign the document upon reaching the necessary accords.
Medvedev also empowered the ministry to introduce minor amendments in the agreement if need be.
The agreement regulates the issues of and procedures for rendering assistance in what concerns icebreaker support - the admission of icebreakers into the Russian and Finnish zone of the territorial sea and into internal seawaters of the two countries, the patterns for cooperation between the appropriate agencies of Russia and Finland, and the amicable solution of the disputes arising from the interpretation or implementation of one or another provision of the agreement.