Foreign Minister Össur Skarphéðinsson met yesterday with his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, in Moscow. The meeting was a part of the Foreign Minister’s official visit to the Russian Federation. He also visited the headquarters of the Russian Chess Federation and spoke with its leaders regarding Icelandic views on international chess competitions. The Foreign Minister had earlier signed an agreement that facilitates trade in dairy products from Iceland to Russia.
Submarine communications cable
The Foreign Ministers spoke at length on the possibility of laying a submarine communications cable from Russia to Iceland. Foreign Minister Skarphéðinsson declared that Iceland aims to become a telecommunications hub in the High North. The Icelandic company Norline and the Russian company Polarnet are now developing joint plans to lay the cable and its representatives will meet later this week in Moscow. If an agreement is reached, a cable may be ready as soon as the end of 2013. Total investment in the cable project is roughly 150 million USD. The cable could greatly improve Russian communications and prove a backbone in the establishment of future data storage facilities in Iceland.