The ProArctic Tourism Summit in Arkhangelsk in October this year, where AECO and several AECO-members were present resulted in an official Russian resolution. Especially the resolutions bullet point four is of interest for operators considering operations in the Russian Arctic. Here it is stated that:
“Federal Agency for Tourism and the Government of the Arkhangelsk region shall promote the establishment of the crossing point on the State Border of the Russian Federation near Franz Joseph Land Archipelago for the organization of the direct international cruises with foreign and Russian tourists onboard that connect archipelagoes Spitsbergen and Franz Joseph Land.”
The resolution can be read in full text here: https://www.aeco.no/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/2014-12-17-Official-Resolution-from-the-ProArctic-Tourism-Summit-held-in-Arkhangelsk-in-October-2014.pdf
AECO’s contact at the Agency for Tourism and International Cooperation of the Arkhangelsk Region has informed us that the Government of Arkhangelsk is now working on a process of organizing and opening a checkpoint at Franz Joseph Land. The agency has informed AECO’s secretariat that they will keep AECO informed in regard to this development.
We keep our fingers crossed, and will keep you posted.
More information about the ProArctic Tourism Summit can be read (in Russian language) on ProArctic’s officiel website here http://www.pomorland.pro/forumy-i-konferentsii/turistskiy-sammit-proarktik-ot-obsuzhdeniya-k-deystviyam/.