Might Sanctions Against Russia Help Reindeer Herders?

September 11, 2014 • Philip Burgess

Reindeer MeatWith the broadening of sanctions being applied on both sides of the current dispute between Russia and NATO members over the current conflict in Ukraine, there might be a silver lining for domestic producers of meat, such as reindeer herders in Russia as imports of US meat and poultry is halted. The state run importer of foodstuffs in Chukotka (Chukotopttorg) has announced that it will be turning to reindeer meat so that local schools, hospitals and institutions are able to meet their needs, according to various reports (see here for a story from the Siberian Times, and here from the Moscow Times.

One does wonder however, why it has taken so long?


Life on different banks (Alaska and Chukotka)

March 18, 2014 • Alena Gerasimova

At the conference “Days of Beringia” that was held the last time in 2013, the participants concerned the fact that today there is less connection between Chukotka and Alaska, contacts between related indigenous peoples of the two countries have weakened. It was stressed that even in the difficult 90’s connection were much closer, that cultural exchange was carried out regularly enough.  And one of the decisions of the conference was to have conferences through TV and radio service (since today there is no means for regular trips overseas).  It was scheduled to have twelve of suchlike conferences in 2014.

Read more…


Chukotka Reindeer to Kamchatka

October 27, 2008 • Philip Burgess

Vostok Media reported that reindeer from Chukotka were to be brought to Kamchatka to revive reindeer husbandry there which has been in difficulty since the 1990’s..

PETROPAVLOVSK-KAMCHATSKIY. 22 October. VOSTOK-MEDIA. Parliament of Kamchatskiy krai is going to increase population of reindeer which is now in bad condition.
As Minister of Agriculture and Trade of Kamchatskiy Krai Andrey Sizintsev says Kamchatka will receive 1 500 north reindeer from Chukotka in a month. Animals are bought for increasing population in Kamchatka. In the beginning of November reindeer will be directed to the borders of two regions where reindeer herdsmen from Kamchatka will take them to their herds.
Money issue is not being announced for now as it is not a completed matter.
Parliament of Kamchatka is going to prolong cooperation with Chukotka.


Medvedev Visits Reindeer Herders in Chukotka

September 27, 2008 • Philip Burgess

President Medvedev with Chukchi Herders outside their Yaranga. Photo: Anatoly Zhdanov

This week, President Dmitry Medvedev became the first Russian President in history to visit Chukotka. Accompanied by current Governor Kopin and former Governor Roman Abramovich, Medvedev also visited Kanchalan (site of EALAT Information workshop earlier this year) and a brigade on the tundra.

Komsomolskaya Pravda had an article about the visit by Yelena Kriyakina – reproduced below.

Read more…


Abramovich Resigns

July 8, 2008 • Philip Burgess

While this story might seem more appropriate elsewhere, for the residents of Chukotka, the majority of whom are Chukchi (there are also Yupik, Yukaghir, Even and others) several thousand are engaged in reindeer husbandry, it it is important news. The collapse of the Soviet Union was a disaster for Chukchi reindeer husbandry, and the decline in herd size was more dramatic there than anywhere else in Russia (from nearly half a million to 100,000 reindeer). Abramovich’s tenure as Governor saw a enormous investment in the social and cultural capital of Chukotka as he poured millions of his personal fortune into the regions infrastructure and housing. He also prioritised reindeer husbandry and the livelhood has stabilised, been reinvigorated (See EALAT Information presentations from Chukotka) and seen substantial investment. He has not been without his critics, but noone doubts that citizens of Chukotka are better off now than they were when he started as Governor, 8 years ago.

Read more…


Abramovich’s Drill

April 2, 2008 • Philip Burgess

The old plan of a tunnel between Chukotka and Alaska was in the news again, as it was reported that Roman Abramovich, Chukotka’s Goveror (pictured here with reindeer – Chukotka is intending to again become one of world’s great regions of reindeer husbandry, after a disastrous 1990’s) had purchased the world’s largest drill. Abramovich denies the reports of a tunnel plan, stating that a higher priority would be to connect Chukokta to the rest of Russia by road


Abramovich’s Icy Chukotka Venture (from Russia Today)

March 17, 2008 • Philip Burgess

“There are nine time zones and several thousand kilometres between Moscow and Chukotka. But it’s just a 40-minute flight from Alaska.” This article discusses Chukotka and the impacts of Abramovich’s policies as Governor. There is also a video interview with Tatyana Achirgina, who was a participant in the recent EALAT / Aween seminar and workshop in Anadyr, the capital of Chukotka.

Read the full story here

Watch the related video here

Also in this Series..

Reindeer thriving in Russia’s Far East after years of decline

Chukotka gets windfall from national projects 

Chukotka to strike gold


Reindeer Herders, Chukchi First to Vote in Russia

March 9, 2008 • Philip Burgess

(Pic AFP) A new President has been elected in Russia – and given the fact that most reindeer herders in Russia live in remote regions without roads, they are the first to vote, a fact that was much covered across the media. This story features an interview with a reindeer herder in the Nenets Autonomous Okrug. The recent EALAT workshop in Chukotka saw this at first hand with their visit to reindeer herders in Brigade 4, North of Kanchalan which had already been visited by snowmobiles and ballot boxes on February 16th.

(Pic: Philip Burgess. Election station in Anadyr, March 2nd, Chukotka) Native peoples were strongly represented in the election materials on view in the regional capital, Anadyr. Election time in Russia is one of the few times that Chukotka makes it into the national and international media, as it is the first region in the country to vote, being 9 hours ahead of Moscow. The turnout in Chukotka was one of the highest, with a record 83.5% turnout being widely quoted. The Governor of the okrug, Roman Abramovich was also making one of his rare trips to the region for the election, his private Boeing 767 sitting on the Anadyr runway as the EALAT team flew home.

(Pic: Svein Mathiesen. Anders Oskal at the new slaughter house in Kanchalan) The impact of the Governors policies on Chukotka are as visible as they are far reaching. ‘Roman Abramovich’s Chukotka Project’ in openDemocracy is an interesting account of the oligarch’s impact, which for reindeer herders is most visible in the construction of a modern slaughter house in the village of Kanchalan, a village of 750 people, the vast majority of whom are Chukchi and involved in reindeer husbandry.

Read a brief seminar report and pictures here on the Reindeer Portal