The 1/2013 issue of the BarentSaga newsletter

Dear BarentSaga Readers,

It is always a pleasure to announce a new BarentsSaga newsletter to be released. I am certain that our readers can find interesting stuff at our website that has recently been renewed to mark the 20th Anniversary of the Barents Euro-Arctic Council. So they will be able to read about the events relating to the anniversary, incl. a symposium “The First 20 Years”; the way how the design and layout of our website have undergone a quite thorough facelift; a trip of Finnish and Norwegian journalists to Murmansk and Apatity; and tourism in the Barents region. There is also an interview of a veteran Finnish politician of great insight regarding politics in the High North, Mr Paavo Väyrynen.
Obviously the Barents Prime Ministers’ Meeting on 3-4th June 2013 in Kirkenes is the thing among anniversary events not least because of the new declaration that is to be issued. Until now we have seen such summit-like gatherings only once in ten years. But the daily routine will soon resume and then the redesigned website is certainly an asset. While visiting the website everybody can see how fruitfully the Barents cooperation is being conducted on a daily basis. And if we wish to give a more tangible meaning to the word “visit” we can set off for the Barents region as tourists!

Ari Sirén, Head of the International Barents Secretariat
May, 2013

Barents Anniversary

This year we are marking the 20th Anniversary of the Barents Cooperation. The festivities started in January 2013 in Kirkenes at the same venue where the Foreign Ministers of the Barents member states signed the Kirkenes Declaration on 11th January 1993. Read more >>  Inari-Kirkkoniemi 200.jpg

Barents Symposium in Rovaniemi

The Arctic Centre at the University of Lapland and Norwegian embassy in Finland organized jointly a symposium in February 2013 to discuss the past, present and future of the 20 years long cooperation.  Read more >> polarium_symposium_pieni.jpg 


New look for the website

The layout and structure of the Barents Euro-Arctic Council’s website was renewed February 2013. Due to the coming 20th anniversary, it was a good time to refresh the looks and structure of the pages. Read more >>  layout-1-200px.jpg

Tourism: cross-border destination development in the Barents Region

The Barents region is an attractive upcoming destination for international tourism. The major challenge for developing tourism in the Barents region is the lack of cross-border cooperation between the four countries of the region. Read more >>
 safari to the russian border photo by hans hatle - Barents Safari pieni.jpg

Barents Profile - Paavo Väyrynen

Paavo Väyrynen, an old hand at Finnish and international politics, gave a speech in Kirkenes in January 2013 at the Barents cooperation’s 20th Anniversary celebrations seminar.   Read more >>
 paavo pienempi kuva 2.jpg

Barents Communications questionnaire

IBS and the Arctic Centre are assessing the information needs and communication wishes between the entities involved in the Barents cooperation. The research findings will be used to further improve Barents cooperation’s communications.     Read more >> surveying pieni.jpg 

Journalists from Finland and Norway visited Murmansk newsrooms

On 22 - 25 April 2013 several newsrooms in Murmansk received visiting colleagues from the Barents Region. During the time in Murmansk, the Norwegian and Finnish journalists got to know the city, everyday life in the Russian media and the most important, got to know their colleagues across the borders.   Read more >>

Few links to Barents news

See also the previous issues of the BarentSaga.

Visit for more information

The BarentSaga is published by the International Barents Secretariat and the Arctic Centre, University of Lapland.  Contributions to BarentSaga is very welcome!

Contributed to this issue:  Ari Sirén, Yury Nikiforov, Jenny Mikkelsen, Roy Hojem, Jenni Lintula, Arto Vitikka, Markku Heikkilä, Joonas Vola and Hans Hatle.


The International Barents Secretariat

Ari Sirén, Head of Secretariat
tel. +47 78 97 08 70
Fax: +47 78 97 70 79

P.O. Box 107, 9915 Kirkenes
Visiting address: Rådhusgt. 8, Kirkenes
IBS Staff