Kirkenes is located in Sør-Varanger Kommune and is the only municipality that borders to Russia. The municipality has around 10 000 inhabitants, and the most important industries are mining, trade and travel. Kirkenes has a close connection to both Russia and Finland.
In 2012, we got the Local Border Traffic permit for Norway and Russia. The Local Border Traffic permit gives inhabitants in Sør-Varanger, Nikel and Pechenga the opportunity to travel freely in a visa-free area that is 30 km in both countries. With this, Samovarteateret got 40 000 new potential audiences in our local area, and new possibilities for border-crossing cultural cooperations.