The world’s northernmost archipelago, Russia’s Franz Josef Land, could be a key tourist attraction in the Arctic, according to the International Union of Arctic and Far East’s Marine Natural Reserves. Its managing director Valery Korovkin told a tourist forum in Vorkuta that “the Franz Josef Land Archipelago may become a wonderful alternative to Spitsbergen,” pointing out that this is the opinion of many experts. He explained that “every other tourist visiting Spitsbergen wants to visit Franz Josef Land.” According to Korovkin, by serving tourists every year, Spitsbergen earns an equivalent of five billion rubles ($74.5 million), with the international airport there serving about 80,000 tourists. “From the Norwegian side, everything is ready and works fine, so we should have a similar tourist center on the Russian side, especially since we all know about the high tourist interest to the archipelago,” he said.

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