The Role of Russia in Regional Councils
The ambitions and challenges of Russia, within and without its vast territory, have long been of international interest and concern. With the impact of climate change in the Arctic, growing attention is now being paid to Russia’s northern front. Having a strong voice in multilateral cooperation in the High North and a sometimes assertive national Arctic policy, the Russian Federation is a key player in Arctic management and governance.
In this study Ingmar Oldberg, a lifelong Russia expert, offers a comprehensive insight into Russia’s behaviour in, and contributions to, regional councils such as the Council of Baltic Sea States and the Barents Euro-Arctic Council. Highlighting both the shared progress made, and the difficulties resulting from Russia’s policies and internal arrangements, his findings are highly significant for Arctic prospects more generally. The CBSS and BEAC share many characteristics with the Arctic Council, and deal with many of the same challenges affecting areas that extend well above the Arctic Circle. This Occasional Paper sheds light on the strength and weakness of such groupings, and on how their limitations of agenda and power may or may not suit Russian interests. It is published by the Centre for Arctic Policy Studies and is also available online, along with other papers in the series.