The Russian mining giant Norilsk Nickel discussed with the federal and regional authorities of the Russian part in the Arctic, the Murmansk region, the development and financial support of territories and people’s lives.

Photograph: Barnyz/Flickr

Norilsk Nickel aims to promote actions that bring growth and competitiveness in the Arctic region, with due respect for the environment, small indigenous people and the lives of ordinary people.

These goals are combined, for example, with Finland’s Arctic strategy.

Currently, the Arctic region is undergoing many rapid, conflicting developments. Arctic areas are witnessing the effects of global warming more dramatically than any other part of the world; new transport routes are opening up; energy resources and minerals are being exploited; and tourism is on the increase.

Combating climate change and mitigating its impact are vital for the stability and security of the Arctic region and serve as the central point of departure for the activities being carried out there. All this is important from the point of view of Norilsk Nickel as it strives to become a leader in the sustainable development of the region.

During the discussions, Andrey Bugrov, Norilsk Nickel senior vice President for sustainable development, noted that the company is providing up to 30 million rubles (€330,900) to create a business in the Arctic (Pechenga District, Murmansk Oblast, Russia). The company has already negotiated financing for 11 different projects.

All this is important from the point of view of Norilsk Nickel as it strives to become a leader in the sustainable development of the region.

“The ideas are very different: a project to create a production of abrasive materials, a dairy farm, a hotel complex in the city of Zapolyarny, a plant for processing recycled plastic materials, etc. All this will improve the infrastructure and image of the Murmansk region, make it more attractive for investments,” Bugrov said.

He also told how the district development program fits into the concept of sustainable development and the company’s comprehensive environmental strategy.

One of the main objects of tourism development in the district will be the park for active recreation and extreme sports, which will include a ski and acrobatic complex and a diving center. Another major development point will be the housing renovation program.

The development program is closely linked to Norilsk Nickel’s plans to become a green company. An important step in this direction was the closure at the end of 2020 of the smelter in the village of Nikel (about 30 km from Norway).

Also Russian mining giant Norilsk Nickel is modernizing production and will soon become a green company, said the largest shareholder of the mining company, businessman Vladimir Potanin.

“We belong to the category of people who care about criticism, who listen to this criticism, especially in its constructive part, and therefore, of course, we wanted to make such—well, a business card of our company, to demonstrate that we are not just talking about that we will be a green company sometime, but right here and now to do and show something, “Potanin said.

Earlier it was reported that the Russian Norilsk Nickel— the world’s largest producer of nickel and palladium— closed a metallurgical plant in the city of Nickel in northern Russia. Kola is a subsidiary of Norilsk Nickel on the Kola Peninsula with mines, processing plants and pellet processing plants in Zapolyarny, as well as metallurgical plants in Monchegorsk and a plant in Nikel, closed at the end of 2020.

Norilsk Nickel is confident that it is necessary to provide the important prerequisites for the well-being of people living in the northern regions of Russia. Well-being includes mental and material well-being, access to work, effective basic services, equity, security, and education.

In addition, a prosperous local population contributes to economic stability and enhances competitiveness.

It is important to note that each of these goals is very close to the Finnish Arctic Strategy, published a few years ago by then Prime Minister Juha Sipilä (the Centre).