Based on the Barents Transport Strategy, the transport infrastructure can be developed to respond to new challenges that arise in the Arctic and Northern periphery. The general outcome of the strategy work, made in the Barents Freeway project, is that the Barents Region is perceived as a whole with the common strategic objectives of the transport system development.
The Barents Freeway project was launched in September 2012 by
agreement between the Joint Management Administration of the Kolarctic
ENPI CBC Programme 2007-2013 and the Lead Partner, Lapland Centre for
Economic Development, Transport and the Environment. The project, mainly
completed in December 2014, has 10 partners and 10 associated partners
from all the BEAC member states: Russia, Finland, Sweden and Norway.
Financing of the 1.4 million euro joint effort has been provided by the
EU, the four Barents Region countries and the project partners.
An important starting point of the project was the Joint Barents Transport Plan
(adopted by the Ministries of Transport of the Barents Countries in
2013), in which 14 multimodal border-crossing transport corridors were
Why the Barents Transport Strategy?
The main objective of the Barents Freeway project was the
economic and social improvement of local communities in the Barents
Region through formulating the Barents regional-level Transport
Strategy, which serves as a regional-level perspective for the ongoing
national-level transport strategy works. Based on the strategy, the
transport infrastructure can be developed in order to respond to new
challenges that arise in the Arctic and Northern periphery now and in
Traditionally all the states have had their own national
strategies within their borders. As the authorities at all levels are
encouraged to cooperate, the approach could eventually contribute to the
reduction of border constraints and accessibility to regional, national
and international markets. More specifically, the effort will enhance
the transit potential of the Barents Region and integrate it better with
the European TEN-T network on the other hand and the Eurasian road,
rail and maritime corridors on the other. The Barents Freeway project
has been carried out in close cooperation with the national level BEATA
steering group and the NDPTL (Northern Dimension Partnership on
Transport and Logistics) authorities.
How the Strategy was produced?
The two-stage procurement process to find a main
consultant for the project was finalized in April 2013 when Pöyry
Finland Ltd. consultant group started its work. The three main phases of
the work were:
The freight transport model (Frisbee) was used to forecast cargo flows,
and particularly to analyze different railway variants in the region.
After calibrating the Frisbee model with the most recent data the
freight flows for the year 2030 were possible to analyze.
Outcome of the work
Altogether five pilot studies (will be published later on BarentsInfo) were carried out during the project.
The general outcome of the strategy work is that the
Barents Region is perceived as a whole with the common strategic
objectives of the transport system development. The strategy work ended
up recommending among other things the following for the Barents Region:
In addition, specific recommendations were made for all
transport modes including intermodal transport, water transport,
railways and roads as well as aviation. On behalf of the Russian
partners the project also managed an equipment procurement process with
several countries and parties involved.
Salla – Kandalaksha Railway Pilot study between Finnish and Russian
Kolari – Svappavaara (Narvik) Railway Pilot study,
with a total railway length 147 km between Finland and Sweden
Kemijärvi - Kirkenes Railway Pilot study between Finland and Norway traverses close to environmentally sensitive areas