Environment in emerging and transition economies

Environmental co-operation with the Russian Federation


Environmental Co-operation with Russia

An agreement on co-operation between the Russian Government and the OECD was signed in June 1994, though co-operation began in 1991. In 1997, OECD and the Russian government agreed that eventual membership of OECD by Russia was a "shared goal". Annual work programmes are implemented to work toward this objective. In the field of environmental co-operation the overarching objectives are:

  • to assist Russia in integrating environmental considerations into economic reform process; and
  • to promote dialogue between OECD member countries and Russia on environmental policy issues of mutual interest.

This has been implemented through the following core activities:

Environmental Performance Review :

The Environmental Performance Review of the Russian Federation was undertaken in 1998-1999 in co-operation with the UNECE. An expert mission took place in September 1998 and a peer review meeting in Paris in June 1999. The review evaluates the environmental conditions in Russia and progress in meeting domestic objectives and international commitments (Executive Summary). This activity also aimed at supporting Russian authorities in integrating environmental considerations into the economic reform process and assisting OECD member countries in identifying areas where environmental co-operation in Russia could be most effective. The report is published in three languages: English, French and Russian.

Environmental Information and Data :

For four times now Russia has been invited to complete the OECD State of the Environment Questionnaire. The Russian responses to the questionnaire have enabled the Secretariat to compile environmental data within the framework that facilitate better comparison with those of OECD countries. This environmental information on Russia was published in the bi-annual OECD Compendium of Environmental Data, the most recent one in 2001.

Environmental Financing :

Within the EAP Task Force framework the Financing Strategies for the water and wastewater sectors were prepared for the Pskov, Novgorod, Rostov and Kaliningrad regions with the support of the Danish Environmental Protection Agency (DEPA). Financing strategy for municipal solid waste management was initiated in Novgorod and Yaroslavl regions.

A project on development of a Multi-year capital investment plan for municipal infrastructure in the City of Yekaterinburg was recently launched in the EAP Task Force framework with the financial support from the UK DEFRA.

Environmental Instruments in the field of Environment :

A pilot project on streamlining economic instruments for implementation of regional environmental policy in the Rostov region (Russia) has been implemented within the EAP Task Force Work Programme with the financial support from the UKDEFRA. The report is available in English and in Russian.

Urban Water Sector Reform :

Under the Urban Water Sector programme area of the EAP Task Force a project on the collection of performance indicators for water utilities has been carried out with the financial support from Germany and Finland. Indicators were collected in 92 utilities within several regions e.g. Krasnadar, Samara, Perm and the North-Western Federal District of the Russian Federation (including Leningrad, Murmansk, Arkhangelsk, Novgorod, Vologda regions and the Republic of Karelia.

Natural Resource Taxation :

In 2001 the Environment Directorate initiated work related to a taxation policy reform in the Russian Federation. The first phase of the project is currently underway. It is focused on natural resources taxation analysing the environmental and economic impact of the implementation the new Russian law on Natural Resource Taxation (in particular in oil and gas sectors). A second phase of the project starting in the end of 2002 will focus on environmentally related taxes and in particular examine proposed taxes on pollution control. The study will review the political, institutional and economic conditions that support or hinder design and/or implementation of "green taxes" in Russia.

Environmental Policy and Regulation in Russia:

A study was conducted in 2005-2006 to describe the latest developments in environmental policies and regulation, as well as government strategies for ensuring compliance with regulatory requirements in Russia. The study addresses the following issues:

  • Environmental policy, institutional and legal frameworks for environmental management;
    Evolution of the legal framework;
  • Key institutions and their competence;
  • Compliance assurance instruments and strategies.

Factual information and expert opinions were collected during several workshops and interviews with stakeholders. Most importantly, an International Conference “Strategies for Improving Environmental Compliance Assurance in Russia: Policy and Practical Issues” was organised on 19-20 October 2005 in Moscow by the OECD/EAP Task Force and Russian environmental protection authorities. The objective of this event was to discuss latest developments of environmental management in Russia and take stock of opportunities and obstacles to improving this system within the framework of the administrative reform and in light of good international practice. Also a delegation from Russia visited the OECD in late December 2006 to discuss the report.

For more information please contact:

Ms. Eija Kiiskinen
Environment and Globalisation Division
Environment Directorate, OECD
2, rue André-Pascal
75775 Paris Cedex 16, France
e-mail: eija.kiiskinen@oecd.org
Tel: 33 1 45 24 18 40
Fax: 33 1 45 24 96 71