State Duma deputies pass basic northern deliveries bill
State Duma deputies approved the basic northern freight deliveries bill at the second and third readings. The document aims to create a legal and organizational framework for northern freight deliveries and to amend some other laws accordingly.
The government submitted the bill to the State Duma this past February. The document defines northern freight deliveries as a combination of measures and financial mechanisms for ensuring regular and uninterrupted deliveries to Extreme North territories and to other areas having the same status and limited delivery times. The government drafted the bill, as instructed by President Vladimir Putin.
The bill stipulates such concepts as territories eligible for northern freight deliveries and territories with limited delivery times. The government will approve a list of these territories in accordance with proposals by top regional officials.
The bill clearly delimits the prerogatives of federal, regional and municipal authorities in this sphere. It states expressly that the Ministry for the Development of the Russian Far East and Arctic shall act as the joint federal northern delivery coordinator. The document also introduces the concept of a unified merchant marine northern delivery operator. The government shall select a legal entity to facilitate regular northern freight deliveries between seaports for a period of 15 years. The government shall also set the launch date of the above-mentioned operator’s work no later than January 1, 2026.
Additionally, the bill aims to establish a federal state information system for monitoring northern deliveries. According to its authors, the system will process and analyze data on northern deliveries, monitor freight traffic routes and expose possible delivery delays on time. The Ministry for the Development of the Russian Far East and Arctic or any other organization subordinate to it could operate the new information system.