The digital conference, held on 13th and 14th April, brought together delegates from the five Nordic countries, Canada, Russia, the USA and the European Parliament, the Arctic indigenous peoples, and a number of observers. The statement was adopted before the end of the conference on Wednesday.
The statement points out that the Arctic is warming at twice the rate of the global average. The consequences are being felt in the Arctic as well as globally. As a result, MPs have called on the governments of the Arctic region to:
- enhance the Arctic cooperation ahead of the UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow in the autumn
- forge an ambitious climate action planfor the Arctic
- strengthen the knowledge base and improve scientific cooperation with a new International Polar Year initiative
- continually consider new technologies in an effort to reduce carbon emissions
Sustainable Economic Development
To ensure sustainable economic development, the MPs have urged governments to improve accessibility to digital infrastructure in the region, and to promote entrepreneurship, innovation and economic development. They have also called for greater cooperation with the Arctic Economic Council, and the implementation of the Arctic Investment Protocol.
People in the Arctic
The conference statement points out that urbanization has made the Arctic more attractive for young people, but that COVID-19 has led to higher unemployment and greater health challenges for the Arctic population. The statement calls on governments to:
- reinforce public health services in the region
- include the views of young people’s in events and meetings arranged in the Arctic cooperation
- increase the funding of mobility programs directed at young people in the Arctic
- base all activities in the Arctic Region on the respect of the rights of indigenous peoples
- promote contact between people in the region by simplifying the visa regime
- strengthen cooperation and dialogue on security issues
The conference also underlined the importance of peace and stability in the Arctic Region.
About Arctic cooperation
The Arctic Region is characterized by efficient international cooperation, with such bodies as the Arctic Council and the Arctic parliamentary cooperation playing a major role. MPs enjoy close ties with their governmental counterparts in the Arctic Council. The parliamentary cooperation was established in 1993, and the Storting set up a permanent delegation in October 2009. The Storting hosted this year’s conference.
Read the conference statement
Read more about the Arctic parliamentary conference
The Storting’s Delegation for Arctic Cooperation