Nornickel and the Kola Sami Association, a public organisation, have signed an agreement on partnership and collaboration.
The document was signed by Elena Rocheva, President of the Association, and Andrey Grachev, Vice President, Federal and Regional Programmes at Nornickel.
The signing ceremony took place at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum.
Under the terms of the agreement, the Company will contribute to the sustainable development of the Sami people, a community of indigenous small population peoples of the North of the Murmansk region. Nornickel will support the development of their culture and preservation of traditional ways of living, while using best practices of interaction and cooperation.
One of the goals of the agreement is introducing best practice developed during interaction and collaboration between Nornickel and the Associations of Indigenous Minorities of the North, Siberia and the Far East of the Russian Federation of the Krasnoyarsk Region and of the Taymir. This includes implementing social and charitable projects and competition programmes, as well as mutual planning of infrastructure development, provision of high-quality health-resort treatment, support for education in the national language, and promoting culture, lifestyle and traditions.
Andrey Grachev, Vice President, Federal and Regional Programmes at Nornickel, commented: “The Far North is not only pure business for Nornickel. People come first. While the Company does not have production facilities in areas of Sami settlement, we consider their requests and are ready to use our experience from the Taymir interaction with indigenous small population peoples of the North on the Kola Peninsula.
We implement environmental, charitable and social projects aimed at preserving their culture and developing traditional way of living, as well as trades. Around 1,600 Sami people live on the territory of the Kola Peninsula, while the number of other minority representatives is even smaller. Our task is to prevent these peoples from extinction and from losing their identity. I am confident that our reliable partnership will help improve the quality of life of the Sami people, and preserve the unique ethnic and cultural identity of the Kola Peninsula.”
Elena Rocheva, President of the Kola Sami Association, commented: “We have been cooperating with Nornickel for several years now. In 2019, an almanac of Sami literature was published. Last year in Murmansk, with the company’s support, we erected a World War II monument to the Sami defenders of the Soviet Polar region. Today’s agreement continues our meaningful dialogue and our joint work. We have laid out a plan for the next steps together. Just in a few days, with Nornickel’s assistance, Olenegorsk will host the 25th festival of Sami music and culture. We are also planning to organise health resort treatment for the Sami people in the Murmansk Region and a number of research projects, including those focused on the research and support of the Sami language.”