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Karelia Gateway – Border Service Centre
Funded by Euregio Karelia Neighbourhood Programme 2001-2006

Objective of the project

The goal of the project was to improve the operational environment of cross-border entrepreneurship, business, and industry-wise by creating a Border Service Centre.

Main activities

• Gathering of know-how and expertise into the Border Service Centre regarding operations across the border, • Creating a quality control system and operational model for the Border Service Centre: forming an expert network around the core activities, • Offering companies expert and support services in different types of issues related to operating in Russia, • Organisation of trips for negotiations and training events.


The Karelia Gateway Border Service Centre began regular operations in Tohmajärvi as a regional advisory and support centre for companies, stakeholders, and partners in Central and North Karelia. During the project, it offered expert services to 61 companies. The support functions of trade with Russia were classified to sales & marketing, management, finance, production, and logistics. Sales & marketing part included marketing research, creating and reviewing bilingual contracts, negotiations, interpretation, translations, producing marketing material, forwarding requests for quotations, and planning marketing strategies. The management section included monthly reports of the business environment, business plans regarding trade with Russia, establishing companies, and Managing Myself training. Finance services included creating investment and development aid applications. Production services included researching subcontracting opportunities. In reference to logistics, legal changes at the Russian customs were monitored and practical customs issues resolved. In practice, the service usually consisted of need assessments for companies, formulating business plans, seeking Russian partners, and assisting/advising during start-up and implementation negotiations of a new business relationship. The advisory services were offered to Finnish actors as well as to Russian companies regarding the search for partners, business meetings, subcontracting research, exhibition arrangements and assisting Russians to become established in Finland. Cooperation between Finnish and Russian companies increased through activities at the Border Service Centre: as a result of the trips for negotiation, contacts were established or direct agreements made with regard to initiating or implementing cooperation-based activities.

Basic information


Karelia Gateway – Border Service Centre


2001-11-01 - 2005-04-30

Total Budget / Programme funding

640 345 € / 448 242 €

Lead partner

North Karelia Municipal Education and Training Consortium / KETI Centre for Development and Information in Central Karelia
Lead partner web-site


Town of Sortavala
City of St. Petersburg
Sortavala Branch of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Republic of Karelia
Central Karelia municipalities
University of Joensuu/ Itäinnova
Josek Oy
North Karelia Chamber of Commerce