Yakutsk Conference Participants Evaluate Urban and Territorial Development Prospects of Arctic

Participants of the Arctic: Territory of DevelopmentConference on Ensuring a Comfortable Urban Environmentwhich took place on 2225 May in Yakutsk, discussed the development of the urban Arctic environment, the creation of master plans for northern cities and the tourism industry, and the implementation of the Arctic Hectare programme. The Conference took place as part of main events being organized by the Roscongress Foundation for Russias chairmanship of the Arctic Council in 20212023.

The Conference was attended by representatives of the Ministry for the Development of the Russian Far East and the Arctic, the Far East and Arctic Development Corporation, companies and regions in Russias Arctic zone, and leading experts.

Minister for the Development of the Russian Far East and Arctic Alexei Chekunkov and Chair of the Senior Arctic Officials andAmbassador-at-Large for Arctic Cooperation of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation Nikolay Korchunovaddressed Conference participants with welcoming remarks. 

The role played by industrial enterprises in the development of settlements predetermined the approach taken towards the urbanization of Arctic zone territories. Historically, the creation of reference points of industrial development led to the cities being tied to industrial facilities and designed as urban areas with this principle in mind. At present, integrated development of Arctic settlements can be facilitated by urban master plans. A total of 25 such documents are to be developed in the Far East, one of which is the master plan of the Arctic city of Anadyr. First Deputy Chairman of the Government of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia) Kirill Bychkov said that master plans were in the works for six cities in Yakutia in 2022: LenskMirnyNeryungriOlekminskTommot, and YakutskIn addition, similar documents have already been developed for the three Yakut Arctic settlements of Olenka, Tiksi, and Chokurdakh.

Experts pointed to human capital aa key element of Arctic territorial development. In 2022, the Far East and Arctic Development Corporation will be launching a programme aimed at developinghigher education in the Far East that will also affect the Arctic territories. In addition, Deputy Minister for Arctic Development and Northern Affairs of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia) and the Russian Chairmanship Special Envoy for Indigenous and Regional Cooperation Mikhail Pogodaev spoke of a plan to launch an Arctic Startup Expedition training program