The theme of the launch, which took place in Tromsø during the Arctic Frontiers conference, was how Nordic co-operation can promote sustainable growth and innovation in the Arctic. Swedish Minister for Foreign Affairs and Minister for Nordic Co-operation Margot Wallström and Danish Minister for Equal Opportunities and Nordic Co-operation Karen Ellemann were both present, as was Secretary General of the Nordic Council of Ministers Dagfinn Høybråten.
Together, the Nordic countries form the world’s 11th largest economy and have a combined population of 27 million. Close and effective Nordic co-operation is important for Norway and a high priority for the Government.Close and effective Nordic co-operation is important for Norway and a high priority for the Government.
The presidency of the Nordic Council of Ministers is held for one year at a time and rotates between the five Nordic countries. The country holding the presidency develops a programme to guide Nordic co-operation during that year.
An outward-looking presidency
The programme for the Norwegian Presidency of the Nordic Council of Ministers in 2017 focuses on three main pillars:
- 1. The Nordic Region in transition
- We will promote promote Nordic competitiveness, the transition to a green, low-carbon economy, integration, and co-operation on health.
- 2. The Nordic Region in Europe
- We will work to boost our co-operation on European policy. A strong Nordic voice in the European debate benefits Europe as well as the Nordic Region.
- 3. The Nordic Region in the world
- We will further develop the Nordic strategic partnership in foreign policy.
The Nordic Region in transition
“The Nordic countries face a tough period of transition over the next few decades. Under our Presidency, we will work to ensure that Nordic co-operation produces results for people living in the Nordic Region. We will work with our Nordic colleagues to address key challenges such as digitisation and the transition to a green economy,” said Bakke-Jensen.
More information about Nordic cooperation and the Norwegian Presidency of the Nordic Council of Ministers can be found here: regjeringen.no/norden2017 (in Norwegian only) #norden2017
“Closer Nordic co-operation is a natural response to an increasingly unpredictable global situation. We will work together to further develop the Nordic region and ensure that it remains the most integrated region in the world,” said Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg.