Agreement on the Nordic budget

02.11.21 | News
Nordiska rådets flagga
Magnus Fröderberg
The Nordic Council of Ministers’ budget for 2022 was approved on Tuesday 2 November by the Ministers for Nordic Co-operation and has also been considered by the Presidium of the Nordic Council. The budget has been prepared in line with the guidelines contained in Vision 2030 for Nordic co-operation, which means a clearer focus on the green transition in the Nordic Region than before. The final budget is the result of negotiations with the Nordic Council. Unused funds from previous years are channelled to the culture and education sectors, to investments in young people and languages, and to preparing a fund for climate and biodiversity.

The budget has been discussed in public before the decision, due to concerns regarding significant cuts in the financing of cultural and educational co-operation.

“The prime ministers have set the objective for our work that the Nordic Region will become the most sustainable and integrated region in the world. This presupposes an increase in resources for climate and sustainability in the budget for 2022, as well as for measures that will deepen integration in the region; and this need will still be there in the coming years,” says Thomas Blomqvist, who chaired the meeting of the Ministers for Nordic Co-operation. “At the same time, it’s become increasingly clear during the pandemic just how important Nordic art, culture, and solidarity are for those living in the Nordic Region. That’s why I’m pleased that, with the support of unused funds from previous years, we were able to work out a special one-year investment in culture and education,” he noted.

In the last stage of preparing the budget, negotiations were, as always, conducted between the Nordic Council of Ministers and the Nordic Council. The budget compromise totals DKK 15.1 million.  

The President of the Nordic Council, Bertel Haarder, is very pleased that culture and education will continue to be a top priority in 2022.

“For the Nordic Council, it was extremely important that culture and education were not dealt another blow, after all the difficulties that the pandemic gave rise to. Of course, we also think that the green transition is important, but cultural co-operation is the cornerstone of our co-operation,” he says.

Following the negotiations, the President also emphasised the need for even closer co-operation between the Nordic Council and the Nordic Council of Ministers – both politically and administratively.

“We’ve always said that we’re strongest together, and that’s no less the case here,” says Bertel Haarder.


Among other things, the budget compromise strengthens the financing of several cultural funding programmes and Nordic cultural institutions, language co-operation, the Nordic Region in School and Nordjobb, as well as Nordic Literature Week.

The chair of the Nordic Council Committee for Knowledge and Culture, Kjell-Arne Ottosson is extremely relieved.

“We feared major cuts for a sector that’s already been hit hard, but this budget provides a framework for continued strong cultural co-operation,” he says.

In its report on the budget compromise, the Nordic Council emphasised its desire for a council of ministers for transport to be established as soon as possible. The Presidium of the Nordic Council is in agreement on this issue, and the request is also part of the agreement reached between the Nordic Council of Ministers and the Nordic Council.

“Establishing a council of ministers for transport would be completely in line with the emphasis on both integration and the green transition,” says the Nordic Council’s Vice President, Annette Lind. “We believe that existing co-operation would be more effective if the structures for co-operation were permanent,” she noted.

Budget planning for the coming years is based on a gradual and goal-oriented redistribution of the Nordic budget, in line with a four-year action plan adopted by the Nordic Council of Ministers following consultation with the Nordic Council in November 2020.

“The Nordic Region needs to work with a long-term perspective if it’s to remain the forerunner in the green transition,” says Blomqvist. “We’re pleased to see that there’s strong support for the planned investment in climate work among those living in the Nordic Region. The survey commissioned by the Nordic Council of Ministers and the Nordic Council, which was published last week, confirms this,” he noted.

The discussion on the budget process for the coming years will begin in December when representatives of the current and future presidencies of the Nordic Council of Ministers will meet the current and future presidencies of the Nordic Council for an initial review.


- The Nordic Council of Ministers is the official body for inter-governmental co-operation. The Ministers for Nordic Co-operation decide on the Nordic Council of Ministers’ budget. The budget is presented to the Nordic Council in connection with the annual Session.

- The Nordic Council is the official body for inter-parliamentary co-operation. During the Session, the Nordic Council will vote on the budget compromise that has been reached between the Nordic Council and the Nordic Council of Ministers. The budget compromise is included in its entirety in the budget.

- The total budget for 2022 is DKK 969 million. The Nordic Council's budget for 2022 is approximately DKK 37 million

Read the background information on the budget here: