Arctic Yearbook 2015 - Page 282

282 Arctic Yearbook 2015 Foundations of Russian Federation State Policy in the Arctic through 2020 and beyond defines the main objectives, tasks, strategic priorities and mechanisms of the Russian Federation’s state policy on the Arctic, as well as a system of measures on the strategic planning of socio-economic development and Russia’s national security in the Arctic. According to the document, Russia’s national interests in the Arctic include: 1) the use of the Russian Federation’s Arctic zone as a strategic resource base for the Russian Federation, in this way providing a solution to the social and economic development problems of the country; 2) the preservation of the Arctic as a zone of peace and cooperation; 3) the conservation of the unique ecosystems of the Arctic; and 4) the use of the Northern Sea Route as a national integrated transport communication route for the Russian Federation in the Arctic (Foundations of Russian Federation State Policy in the Arctic through 2020 and beyond 2008: 2). So, Russia’s key areas of national interest in the Arctic are natural resource extraction, international cooperation, environment and logistics. In the seminal document, Russia’s main goals in the Arctic are structured around six areas that are also defined as priorities in the development strategy: 1) socio-economic development – to expand the resource base for Russia’s need for raw materials; 2) military security and the defence and protection of the state border – to ensure a favourable operational regime; 3) environmental safety – to protect the environment of the Arctic; 4) information technology and communication – to create a unified information space in the Arctic; 5) science and technology – to accumulate knowledge and to create modern scientific and geographic information bases for the management of the Arctic territories; and 6) international cooperation – to provide mutually beneficial bilateral and multilateral cooperation with the Arctic states (Foundations of Russian Federation State Policy in the Arctic through 2020 and beyond 2008; The Development Strategy of the Russian Arctic and national security for the period until 2020 2013: 3-4). The foundations document also sets a time frame for the implementation of Russia’s national interests in the Arctic. The three stages of development highlight the key milestones in the implementation of Russia’s state policy on the Arctic. During the first phase from 2008 till 2010, Russia must prepare materials to justify the external border of its Arctic zone, broaden international cooperation, and implement various target programs and investment projects on the basis of public-private partnership. The main tasks of the second phase from 2011 till 2015, are to ensure international legal formalization of the external border of the Arctic zone, to restructure the economics of the Arctic zone based on the mineral-resources and aquatic biological resources in the region, to establish and develop infrastructure and a management system for Northern Sea Route communications for Eurasian transit, and to complete the establishment of a unified information space in the Arctic. The third phase from 2016 till 2020, should ensure the transformation of the Arctic zone into the leading strategic resource base of the Russian Federation. In general, the implementation of state policy in the medium term should allow Russia to maintain its role as the leading Arctic power and is aimed at increasing comprehensive competitive advantages for the strengthening of Russia’s position in the Arctic (Foundations of Russian Federation State Policy in the Arctic through 2020 and beyond 2008: 9-10). The subsequent documents specify the ways for achieving this goal. The Development Strategy of the Russian Arctic and national security for the period until 2020 (2013) Foreign & Domestic Discourse on the Russian Arctic