Governor of the Sakhalin region Ivan Malakhov offered Japan to develop economic cooperation in the South Kurile islands first of all. (Japan itself claims sovereignty over these islands, which were incorporated into the USSR after WWII.)
The press service of the regional administration told RIA Novosti on Friday that Malakhov declared this on the Tanfilyev island of the Little Kurile Range saying that the issue of territorial delimitation would not be solved soon.
In this connection, the governor proposes to include a representative of the Sakhalin region in the Russian part of the inter-governmental commission on the territorial delimitation because the South Kurile islands are a municipal formation of the constituent member of the Federation.
"The South Kurile district is among few region's districts, where the size of the population and the birthrate are growing, construction increases and lands are allocated for individual housing building," Mr. Malakhov pointed out. There are still problems in the southernmost district of the Sakhalin region but changes for improving the situation are being made. The governor believes that "these abundant but poorly studied islands should be developed."
Preparation for the forthcoming heating season is being conducted on the Kunashir and Shikotan islands, and the salmon fishing season begins. The fishing industry complex is the core of the South Kurile's economy. That is why the governor, during his routine visit to the islands, focused on the problems of this sector since its tax deductions constitute the basis of South Kurile region's budget.