A new water traffic strategy is being developed for Saimaa, the extensive waterways at the heart of Finland’s beautiful Lakeland region. The new strategy aims to unify the region’s approach to promoting water freight traffic and tourism, covering both the internal water traffic within Saimaa, as well as cooperation with neighbouring Russia.
Juha Willberg, the chairperson of the strategy group and chief of the Port of Lappeenranta, hopes that the cost of using the Saimaa Canal between Finland and Russia will remain reasonable in the future and the national significance of the water freight passing through the canal is given the recognition it deserves. The increasing freight in wood chips will require investments from industry, port authorities and affected cities.
The new strategy will play its part in developing the logistics sector and also has a vision for developing tourism in the Saimaa region. For example, the draft version of the strategy suggests that foreign boats could be offered winter storage and maintenance services.