Finland Gives Thumbs up to Collaboration with St. Petersburg Water Company

The Finnish Environment Ministry has produced a report on its collaboration with the Russian state unitary enterprise St. Petersburg Vodokanal. The document gives a positive evaluation of the collaboration on improving the environmental situation in the Gulf of Finland. Over a ten year period the collaborative work has managed to increase the unitary company's effectiveness, reduce the amount of untreated water released into the Gulf, increase the efficiency of electricity use, and improve the company's financial situation.

Laura Saijonmaa, an expert in the ministry, told Rosbalt's correspondent that this kind of report is standard practice for joint projects between Finland and her foreign partners because 'taxpayers have the right to know where their money goes'. Over 50 joint projects, costing around EUR 33 million, have been carried out over the last 10 years. Finland has contributed EUR 12 million to these projects in the form of grants. The results of the research will be used in preparing the framework for a new programme of collaboration between the Finnish Environment Ministry and St. Petersburg Vodokanal in the years 2003-2006.

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