Nicola Sturgeon hails Scotland's links with Arctic nations

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon opens the Arctic Circle Forum. Picture: PA
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon opens the Arctic Circle Forum. Picture: PA

Nicola Sturgeon has said closer links with the Arctic countries will help Scotland to become a "fairer and more prosperous nation".

Scotland is hosting the Arctic Circle Forum in Edinburgh today with hundreds of government ministers, officials and policymakers from 50 countries.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon attending the Arctic Circle Forum. Picture: PA

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon attending the Arctic Circle Forum. Picture: PA


The event includes talks and seminars covering challenges facing northern nations, with a particular focus on innovation, science and sustainable development.

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“Countries around the world are dealing with the challenge of how to support a successful and dynamic economy while also building a fair and inclusive society," Ms Sturgeon said in an opening address.


"As Scotland seeks to achieve this aim, we have – and will continue to – look north for inspiration.


“Nations in the Arctic account for five of the top 11 countries in the UN Human Development Index. Not only that but they are high achieving when it comes to social provision and economic innovation and growth."


Speakers at the event include Iceland’s Foreign Affairs Minister Gudlaugur Thór Thórdarson, as well as Faroe Islands’ Minister of Foreign Affairs andTrade Poul Michelsen and Lord Deben, Chairman of the UK Committee on Climate Change.


Ms Sturgeon added: “I believe the strong links we have been building in recent years, illustrated by Scotland’s increasing engagement with the Arctic Circle organisation, is already proving to be mutually beneficial.


“From cooperation on the environment, to new business links, or how we empower local communities, we will continue to work with international partners, particularly our northern friends, to tackle the shared social and economic challenges we face.”

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