Abstract and keywords
Abstract (English):
The states of the Azov-Black sea basin make an active usage of different transboundary resources, first of all, natural, spatial and anthropogenic for personal use that mostly come into collision with the global purposes of the steady region development. Rather unsteady environment is being formed in the given region when the interference of the inner and outer negative factors of social, economic, anthropogenic political and ecological development occurs. All that leads to the formation of the complex problems demanding urgent solution. For the benefit of the production of recommendations for the effective realization of the state policy of transboundary natural management and finding out strong and weak points, opportunities and threats the SWOT analysis of the factors influencing the realization of the transboundary natural management policy in the Azov –Black sea basin has been performed. Currently the determining role in the formation and realization of transboundary natural management policy is being played by the political factors including geopolitical unsteadiness, absence of agreement in decisions taking and unpredictability of the tendency of international sanctions establishment. In this case on the one hand environmental policy is a “victim” of the political ambitions of the states of the region, on the other hand – it is able to act as consolidating factor for the countries realizing the necessity of solving the problem of the steady natural management facing the common ecologic threats.

Keywords:
the Azov-Black sea basin, transboundary natural management, natural management policy, environmental policy.
Text
  1. Introduction

The problem of the transboundary natural management of the Azov- Black sea basin worsened after the USSR dissolution as a result of which new sovereign paradigm of the provision of the national security of each state in the Azov basin have appeared. Much time has been given to the realization of measures for the formation of the proper system and to date the effective way and mechanism of the provision of transboundary natural management in the Azov Sea hasn’t been produced. The same situation is at the Black sea. The states of the Azov-Black sea basin make an active usage of different trans border resources first of all, natural, spatial and anthropogenic for personal use that mostly come into collision with the global purposes of the steady region development. In these terms the relevance of the observed question is proved by the necessity of the transformation of socio-economic relations appearing in the process of realization of the state policy in the field of transboundary natural management by the Russian Federation.

In the observed region rather unsteady environment is being formed when the interference of the inner and outer negative factors of social, economic, anthropogenic political and ecological development occurs. All that leads to the formation of the complex problems demanding urgent solution.

In particular:

- increasing contradictions at the South-East of Ukraine are the exterior factors stipulating the transgressions of the transboundary natural management of the Azov basin. In these terms the focus of the attention to the rational usage of water-biological resources of the Azov basin “is getting smeared” giving place to other problems that leads to the negative consequences in the field of current and future natural management  for both countries;

- negative factors of social, economic and political interrelation between Ukraine and Russia in the question of usage of the anthropogenic resources of the Azov-Black sea basin worsen tendencies of the global economic crisis influencing the condition of the economies of all countries of the Azov-Black sea basin. Suffering socio-economic crisis Abkhazia and Georgia can’t as well regulate relations in terms of the usage of the Black sea resources.

- political contradictions between Turkey and Russia and inter ethnic conflicts on the territory of Turkey itself and military conflicts at its southern borders don’t contribute into the development of the steady management system of trans border natural management;

- territorial and geopolitical ambitions of Romania targeted at the annexation of the territory of Moldova including Pridnestrovskaya Moldavian Republic and low life level in Romania itself as well as in Bulgaria compared to other countries of EU make these states actively use trans border natural resources of the Black sea that leads to their constant overexploitation.

Despite of these facts having no direct influence on natural management of the Black sea they make serious negative impact on the economics condition of the states in the whole that inevitably leads to increase of natural resources usage.

 

  1. . Methods

 

For the benefit of the  production of recommendations for the effective realization of the state policy of transboundary natural management and finding out strong and weak points, opportunities and threats the SWOT analysis of the factors influencing the realization of the transboundary natural management policy in the Azov –Black sea basin has been performed.

 

  1. Results

 

Having observed every matrix of factors influencing the realization of the natural management policy and their SWOT-analysis it is worthwhile to make a scenario prognosis of the development of the situation in the field of transboundary natural management in the Azov-Black sea basin. In particular we should define:

  • necessity of usage of strong points for the realization of opportunities (S&O);
  •  necessity of the making disposition of  strong points to block the threats (S&T)
  • necessity of “covering” weak points for the non-interference with the realization of opportunities (W&O) ;
  • development according to the worst scenario where the weak points cross with the treats (W&T)

 

 

    Table 1 – SWOT analysis of social factors

 

  

Strong points

Opportunities

-Affiliation of the Crimea to the RF ;

-solution of any questions (including the ones connected with the  transboundary natural management) with foreign partners absolutely from the beneficial perspective of Russia without any tradeoffs to “friends” (no one owes anything to anybody);

- Production of the resources along all the offshore of the Azov sea in case of migration of the commercial stock of water biological resources (WBR);

- Removal from the agenda of the question concerning the separation of the Kerch strait;

- Increase of the value of the reached and concluded  agreements including the ones in the field of  transboundary natural management  by making win-win solutions;

- Striving of all sides to the international legitimation of the reached agreements.

- Development of the natural management and increase of its heritage in the Crimea;

 

- Formation of the interstate committee of 7 states on the basis of parities regarding the questions of natural management in the Azov- Black sea with the right of veto for each of them. Giving the international status to the activity of this committee;

 

- Delimitization of the state border at the Azov sea.

Weak points

Threats

- Improvement of competition among adjoining states of the Azov-Black sea  basin;

- Loss of strategically important partners represented by Ukraine and Georgia connected with the striving of these states to become members of NATO and become integrated into EU;

- Political contraventions connected with the introduction of the economic sanctions by the EU;

- Unavailability of delimitization of the state border at the Azov sea till the political contraventions solutions;

- Unity of the states of Azov –Black sea  basin according to the membership principles of NATO and EU allows competitors to get plurality in case of participatory solutions of questions connected with natural management of the  basin;

-Military conflicts in the adjoining states (Ukraine-Donbass, Syria).

- Growth of contraventions between the states of the basin;

 

- Absence of the political regulation of the conflict in Donbass;

 

- Extermination of WBR in the Azov sea as a rule by the citizens of Ukraine in the factual Russian part of the Azov sea area.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Table 2 – SWOT – analysis of the political factors

Strong points

Opportunities

-Affiliation of the Crimea to the RF ;

-solution of any questions (including the ones connected with the  transboundary natural management) with foreign partners absolutely from the beneficial perspective of Russia without any tradeoffs to “friends” (no one owes anything to anybody);

- Production of the resources along all the offshore of the Azov sea in case of migration of the commercial stock of water biological resources (WBR);

- Removal from the agenda of the question concerning the separation of the Kerch strait;

- Increase of the value of the reached and concluded  agreements including the ones in the field of  transboundary natural management  by making win-win solutions;

- Striving of all sides to the international legitimation of the reached agreements.

- Development of the natural management and increase of its heritage in the Crimea;

 

- Formation of the interstate committee of 7 states on the basis of parities regarding the questions of natural management in the Azov- Black sea with the right of veto for each of them. Giving the international status to the activity of this committee;

 

- Delimitization of the state border at the Azov sea.

Weak points

Threats

- Improvement of competition among adjoining states of the Azov-Black sea  basin;

- Loss of strategically important partners represented by Ukraine and Georgia connected with the striving of these states to become members of NATO and become integrated into EU;

- Political contraventions connected with the introduction of the economic sanctions by the EU;

- Unavailability of delimitization of the state border at the Azov sea till the political contraventions solutions;

- Unity of the states of Azov –Black sea  basin according to the membership principles of NATO and EU allows competitors to get plurality in case of participatory solutions of questions connected with natural management of the  basin;

-Military conflicts in the adjoining states (Ukraine-Donbass, Syria).

- Growth of contraventions between the states of the basin;

 

- Absence of the political regulation of the conflict in Donbass;

 

- Extermination of WBR in the Azov sea as a rule by the citizens of Ukraine in the factual Russian part of the Azov sea area.

 

 

Table 3 - SWOT-analysis of the economic factors

Strong points

Opportunities

- The development of import substitution as a result of Western sanctions against Russia;

 

- Resumption of fishing and fish processing plants in the Crimea

- Learning new markets, the development of environmentally friendly products due to the development and improvement of the fish processing industry;

 

- Ensuring the effectiveness of nature protection measures and the increase of responsibility for violation of environmental legislation;

 

- The ability to replenish the budget at the expense of the implementation of new projects in the field of natural management;

- Additional general employment in coastal areas

 

Weak points

Threats

- High transaction costs of possible arrangements because of the presence of significant number of legal entities and individuals engaged in fishing of water bioresources along the coast of the Azov-Black Sea basin.

- Poaching in the harvesting of water bioresources becomes a way of life for the local population;

- The lack of markets for products produced because of the current poor infrastructure;

- Inconsistency and unpredictability of trends in the imposition of sanctions between basin countries

- The deterioration of the economic condition of the states as a consequence of increased migration of refugees from the Middle East via Turkey, Balkans to Western Europe.

- Inadequate funding in the field of natural management activities in the region;

 

- The deterioration of the material situation of the local population in border areas, as a result of the negative impact of the financial crisis on the economy leading to increased trends in IUU fishing;

 

- Deferral of the problem solution of transboundary natural management till the resolution of the armed conflict.

 

 

 

 

Table 4 - SWOT-analysis of environmental factors

Strong points

Opportunities

- Improvement of the environment in this region as a whole, due to the strengthening of the environmental component in the management, including the Krasnodar state program "Environmental protection, reproduction and use of natural resources";

 

- A large capacity of the Azov-Black Sea basin ecosystem for self-regeneration

- The resumption of productive cooperation between the Azov-Black Sea region countries of the face common environmental threats of the "staples" of political differences

 

- Execution of a mutually beneficial set of measures aimed at increasing the biodiversity of the Azov-Black Sea basin

 

Weak points

Threats

- Regular transportation of oil, including loading and unloading operations in the Azov-Black Sea ports have a negative impact on the marine environment contaminating vast water area.

 

- Irrigation farming countries of the Azov-Black Sea region and the pollution from land-based sources in other countries, as the water of the rivers that feed the sea contains invalid rules of different chemicals used as fertilizers

 

- Eutrophication of water;

 

- The accumulation of solid waste;

 

- Biological pollution of the Black Sea ecosystems with alien species;

 

- Depletion of biodiversity due to all of the mentioned  above processes

 

- Ecological catastrophe of the Azov-Black Sea basin, the recognition of individual basin territories as zones of ecological disaster

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Table 5 - SWOT-analysis of institutional factors

Strong points

Opportunities

- The presence of legal framework which is aimed at the preservation and reproduction of transboundary natural resources in every state of the Azov-Black Sea basin.

- Creation of a single unified international regulatory framework aimed at regulating the consumption of natural resources and transboundary natural resources.

 

Weak points

Threats

- Serious gaps in the Russian national environmental legislation that do not allow a proper degree to implement effective environmental policies in this region;

- Non-compliance and certain contradictions in the environmental legislation, i.e. regulations of  Azov-Black Sea countries fishing;

 - Lack of adequate instruments to respond to existing threats to the environment;

- Available intergovernmental and interdepartmental agreements are not international laws and regulations.

 

- The refusal of some neighboring countries of the Azov-Black Sea basin from the transition to a unified regulatory framework governing the cross-border nature.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Discussion

 

Analysis of social factors shows that for the benefit of formation of the generalized non-controversial regulatory framework tended to regulate transboundary natural management it is necessary to perform integrated monitoring scientific research work by all sides. The performance of the integrated scientifically grounded and open monitoring with the presentation of its results to all stake holders can become the basis for making adequate management solutions for the steady development of transboundary natural management in the Azov-Black sea basin. For the prevention and preclusion of the environmental damage because of poaching, IUU trade and contravention of the legislation in the field of environment protection it is necessary to form mechanism of the preclusion of the given illegal activity. The traditional poaching activity of the locals of some states of the Azov- Black sea basin and the unwillingness of rulers of some states of the basin, leaders of the organizations of the fish- getting and fish - processing industry, businessmen and individuals follow interests of the steady development of the trans border environment management in the Azov – Black sea basin lead to the serious damage to the trans border natural resources up to their dramatic impoverishment and degradation.

Analysis of the political factors tells that affiliation of the Crimea to the RF allows to develop in the given region natural management and increase heritage of usage of transboundary resources in the Azov –Black sea basin and also raise a question about the delimitization of the state border at the Azov sea particularly in a unilateral way, the contribution to which is the removal from the agenda the question connected with the Kerch strait. In addition to it, solution of any questions (including the ones connected with the transboundary natural management) with the foreign partners with overriding priority of Russian interests and without any tradeoffs leads to the formation of the interstate committee of 7 states on the basis of parities regarding the questions of natural management in the Azov- Black sea basin with the right of veto for each state and mandatorily giving the international status to this committee. Increase of the value of the reached and concluded agreements including the ones connected with field of transboundary natural management by making win-win solutions between Russia and Ukraine allows minimize consequences of the extermination of water bioresources in the Azov sea .

The creation of 7 States Interstate Committee for natural management in the Azov-Black Sea basin on the basis of parity with veto right of each of them and the award of international status to the activities of this committee will neutralize the association of the Azov-Black Sea basin countries on the basis of membership in NATO and the EU and it won’t allow competitors to obtain an absolute majority of votes in a possible collective decision of questions regarding natural management in the basin. At the same time, the loss of Russia’s strategically important partners represented by Georgia and Ukraine associated with the desire of these states to gain NATO membership and integration into the EU contributes to increasing disagreements between the basin states and does not lead to a political settle of the conflict in Donbass and the solution of the problem of combating international terrorism represented by IG which is also operating in the south of Turkey. The impossibility of the state border delimitation in the Azov Sea before the solution of political differences entails the further destruction of water biological resources (WBR) in the Russian part of the Azov Sea which is the place for spawning season and feeding period of Azov anadromous fish.

SWOT-analysis of economic factors indicates that targets of the import substitution can open up wide possibilities in the sustainable natural management of the area of interest on the basis of expansion into new markets, development and introduction of environmentally friendly products through the development and improvement of fish processing complex, replenishment capabilities due to the implementation of new projects in the field of natural management, as well as additional general employment in coastal areas. However, weak points are quite serious obstruction among which we can emphasize the high transaction costs of making environmentally relevant international agreements because of big amount of stakeholders; "the habit of poaching" among local communities, where whole generations are engaged in IUU business; the lack of markets for products because of the current poor infrastructure. It is also quite important in our view to mention the situation with the unpredictability of trends in the imposition of sanctions between basin countries that calls into question the strategic prospects of investment.

At the same time the resumption and activation of the fishing and fish processing plants in the Crimea leads to mastering new markets, the development of environmentally friendly products through the development and improvement of fish processing complex makes it possible to supplement the budget at the expense of the implementation of new technologies in the field of natural management projects and provides coastal communities the possibility of additional employment. Resumption and activation of the fishing and fish processing plants in the Crimea somewhat compensates poor funding activities in the field of natural management in the region. Additional general employment of the coastal areas, as well as ensuring the effectiveness of nature protection measures and increased responsibility for violation of environmental legislation can lead to a decrease in poaching in the harvesting of water bioresources.

The result of the analysis of environmental factors shows that the environmental disaster is becoming a real threat in the Azov-Black Sea basin leading to the total loss of their region bioproductive properties and poses a threat to national security despite the large capacity of the Azov-Black Sea basin ecosystem for self-regeneration. At the same time environmentally friendly processes allow to control the level of the waters of municipal solid waste pollution, sewage toxic substances and petroleum products developments in the region thanks to the implementation of the state program "Environmental protection, reproduction and use of natural resources". The activities of a large number of legal entities and individuals engaged in fishing of living water resources can be arranged at the expense of the hard control over the observance of environmental legislation for the protection of natural resources. These preventive measures can help to prevent water eutrophication, accumulation in the waters of municipal solid waste and after all the impoverishment of flora and fauna due to the reduction of biological diversity of the Azov-Black Sea basin.

Finally, the SWOT-analysis of institutional factors reveals that despite the obvious differences in the regulatory framework and governance structure of each of the stakeholders states of the Azov-Black Sea basin, the very presence of this and understanding the difficulty of the situation can be a good basis for creating unified international regulatory framework aimed at regulating the consumption of natural resources and transboundary natural resources of the Azov-Black Sea basin. Creating such a database or a supranational control system aimed at regulating natural management and consumption of transboundary natural resources can compensate for inconsistencies with environmental legislation, including fishing regulations in different countries, lead to their unification in respect of transboundary natural resources, as well as bring the existing intergovernmental and interdepartmental treaties of international status laws and regulations. In addition, the creation of such a database could be an incentive for the development and application of tools for an adequate response to the existing threats to the environment. Moreover, based on common environmental threats resumption of productive cooperation between the countries of the Azov-Black Sea basin for the "staples" of political differences is quite possible. Of course, all efforts will be futile in case that some of the state of the Azov-Black Sea basin refuse to move to a single regulatory framework governing the transboundary natural management with the result that the situation around the environmental legislation will not come to a "common denominator", the tools to respond to existing threats and will not be created and existing intergovernmental and interdepartmental agreements and remain without the status of international legal instruments.

Сonclusion

At the present time a decisive role in shaping and implementing transboundary natural management policies is played by political factors including geopolitical instability, the lack of consistency in decision-making, unpredictable trends in the introduction of international sanctions. In this case, on the one hand environmental policy is a "hostage" of the political ambitions of countries in the region, but on the other hand it is able to perform a consolidating factor for the countries which are aware of the need to address sustainable natural management in the face of common environmental threats.

Supported by the grant № 16-35-00405/16 of the Russian fund of the fundamental researches.

References

1. References no