Nomadic doctor and small deposits - what should be developed in the Yakut Arctic and how? All this was discussed during the strategic session in Yakutsk, in which representatives of municipalities and government entities took part. The results of the session, during which they identified promising key points of the development of the Arctic, were assessed by the head of the region, Aisen Nikolaev.
“Over the past decade, we have gone far down in terms of the socio-economic status of the Arctic regions of Yakutia. We need to build a new strategy, rebuild the republic, its districts and towns,” said Aisen Nikolaev.
The new vision of the development of 13 regions of the republic, which are included in the Arctic zone of Russia, became the basis for the strategic session, in which both the heads of the regions and representatives of ministries and other governmental entities took part. They worked in five teams distributed by the “basin” approach. According to this scheme, the teams were divided into five river basins - Indigirka, Yana, Anabar, Prilensky, and Kolyma.
Participants were not only to highlight the strengths and weaknesses of the regions, but also to develop a number of projects in five areas: Man in the Arctic; Spatial Development; Development of Local Production, Small and Medium Enterprises; Implementation of Large Investment and Infrastructure Projects; Ecology, Science, International Projects.
The most actively proposed ideas were the development of the transport system, small and medium businesses, and the implementation of investment projects. Many teams touched upon the construction of auto-winter roads, fish processing and wild-growing plants and the modernization of power plants.
However, as Vladimir Solodov, Prime Minister of the Republic, noted, environmental and scientific projects were touched upon to a lesser degree. Although they could make a huge contribution to the development of health care in hard-to-reach communities and geological exploration in industrial ones.
So, for example, one of the teams proposed the project Nomadic Doctor: the developers propose to organize trips of medical specialists for a certain period to the Arctic regions, create a unified register of specialists of the republic and the Far East and provide additional equipment for the provision of medical care in the field. There are mobile teams of doctors in the republic, but they can hardly get to hard-to-reach settlements, the participants in the strategic session noted.
Aisen Nikolaev also endorsed the idea of supporting small deposits, which belonged to one of the session team. “The Arctic is inefficient today, because we are spending huge amounts of money on utilities. We spend 2.5 billion rubles a year on subsidies for organizing a utility complex in the Verkhoyansk district only. But the development of local deposits of coal can seriously reduce the cost of housing and communal services,” the head explained.
Il Darkhan drew the attention of the participants to the issues of indigenous peoples of the North and traditional nature management, such as fishing and reindeer herding. “We need to talk more about this. As for fisheries, I doubt that this is an issue of agriculture and the creation of competitiveness. This is more about the preservation of the ethnic group, the habitat of the peoples of the North,” he added.
In general, he commended on the work of the session participants and called for working through all the directions of development of the Arctic in Yakutia, since this is the fate of the territory and concerns not only the region, but the whole country as well.
“Today we have identified key points on which we will focus. It’s too early to talk about the amount of funding for announced projects; many of them are at the idea stage, formed as directions with a focus. The task of the strategic session is for the heads of districts to go home with understanding and ideas to work out their own development strategy for the district,” summed up Vladimir Solodov.