Globalisation initiatives remain high on the prime ministers' agenda, it emerged during a news conference held by the heads of government on Tuesday at the annual Session of the Nordic Council in Stockholm. The prime ministers used the occasion to demonstrate their unity about the future of Nordic co-operation.
The Nordic prime ministers at a joint press conference during the annual Session of the Nordic Council in Stockholm
Green growth, top-level research and new initiatives on the climate, the environment and energy – the Nordic Prime Ministers are set to maintain the present course for Nordic co-operation. The balance between continued growth in the Nordic Region and global environmental and climate considerations is the top political priority.
The Danish Prime Minister, Lars Løkke Rasmussen, reiterated the importance of the Nordic globalisation initiatives, which will continue to be a top priority during the forthcoming Danish Presidency of the Nordic Council of Ministers.
The next Globalisation Forum is coming up in May. The prime ministers will use the occasion to discuss current challenges and opportunities with business leaders and representatives of the research community.
"Dialogue is important. Green growth and the business potential inherent in the climate agenda will be obvious themes to discuss," Rasmussen said.
He also mentioned the Nordic Top-Level Research Initiative (TRI), one of the biggest Nordic flagship projects, and stipulated that the globalisation initiatives and joint Nordic input on global climate change help raise the international profile of the Region. The other prime ministers backed him up.
The Finnish Prime Minister, Matti Vanhanen, pointed out that the Icelandic Presidency of the Nordic Council of Ministers in 2009 has focused on the economic crisis and on climate, environment and energy initiatives as input into COP15. According to him, these priorities are fully in line with the globalisation initiative launched by the prime ministers two years ago.
Vanhanen sees green growth as an effective way of meeting climate, environment, energy and economic challenges, and considers the globalisation initiative an ideal way of combining these aspects of policy.
The Swedish Deputy Prime Minister, Maud Olofsson, also highlighted green growth as a key issue for Nordic co-operation. She referred to what are known as 'eco-efficient economies' as a positive launching pad for a proactive business and economic agenda.
The Secretary General of the Nordic Council of Ministers, Halldór Asgrimsson, reported back to the meeting of prime ministers on the progress made by the Nordic globalisation process. He stressed that the process has altered the whole dynamics of Nordic co-operation and that the first tangible results of the process are beginning to take shape. He also accounted for current and ongoing globalisation initiatives on energy, the climate and the environment and presented the new initiatives just approved by the ministers for Nordic co-operation.
The prime ministers reiterated their full support for the new Nordic agenda and the globalisation process at the Nordic Summit, held as part of the annual Session of the Nordic Council and opened by the Prime Minister of Sweden, Fredrik Reinfeldt.