The project will explore solutions creating cost/eco-efficiency in collaboration with the business sector. The project is under the program “Collaborative Project to meet Societal and Industry-related Challenges”. The collaboration is about efficient logistics solutions, transport safety and reduction of negative environmental impact. A proposed framework for Arctic logistic hubs will also be developed, amongst others. A joint cross-border competence community will also be established in Kirkenes.

The project grant is part of the program for the Norwegian Barents Council chairmanship period, which is chaired by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and allocated via the Norwegian Research Council. 

“This is an important day for cooperation with Russia. We can now cooperate about developing sustainable transport solutions for the Barents region”, Manager Kjell Stokvik of the Centre for High North Logistics and Lead of the UArctic Thematic Network on Arctic Transport and Logistics says in a press statement. 

The project partners are the Northern Arctic Federal University (NArFU), Murmansk State Technical University, Sør-Varanger Utvikling, Tschudi Kirkenes and Akvaplan Niva.

In relation to the Norwegian chairmanship period, the Norwegian Research Council announced grants for research cooperation in health, welfare and business development in the Barents region. These funds were made available from the MFA’s knowledge initiative related to Norway’s chairmanship period of the Barents Council. The ministry states that transport is a prioritized topic on their agenda in the Barents Council where Norway now leads the working group for transport and logistics, BEATA.

"This is an important initiative for the government. The strength of the Barents cooperation is that it is about contact between people in the North. Through our chairmanship priorities of health, people-to-people and knowledge, we want to support what is important for securing strong communities in the Barents region", says State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Marte Ziolkowski.

Current maritime transport and logistics connections in the Barents region will be evaluated and analyzed. Then, methods for increasing the sea transport share of the total cargo flow will be assessed in light of costs and environmental emissions. In addition, the findings from the project will provide reliable input for the Norwegian National Transport Plan as well as for the Joint Barents Transport Plan.

“This cements CHNL’s position significantly and we congratulate the Centre. The project is important for our business school’s cooperation with enterprise and will contribute to reinforcing our 30-year long cooperation with our Russian partners”, says Dean Erlend Bullvåg at Nord University School of Business.