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At today’s public video sitting, the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Riigikogu (Parliament of Estonia) will be given an overview of the study that introduces Estonia’s interests and opportunities relating to the global developments in the Arctic during the next decade and readiness for bilateral cooperation with the countries of the Arctic region.

Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee Marko Mihkelson believes that the Arctic is becoming an increasingly important region for the whole world. “The developments in the Arctic region inevitably influence us through the climate change, the opportunities for economic activities provided by it, and the geopolitical situation. We have to pay more attention to the Arctic and analyse Estonia’s opportunities to contribute to the discussions about the region and to the regional cooperation in the Arctic. The best way to proceed from here is to draft an Arctic strategy for Estonia,” he said.

Mihkelson noted that Estonia’s application to become an observer state in the most important Arctic organisation, the Arctic Council, was a crucial step in shaping Estonia’s Arctic policy. “Observer status in the Arctic Council would enable the Estonian scientists, who have a long experience in exploring the Arctic and the polar regions, to use and strengthen our polar expertise. It is also an opportunity to develop closer cooperation with the countries of the Arctic,” he added.

Mihkelson said that the Foreign Affairs Committee had regularly and constantly discussed the issues relating to the Arctic. The study, which was commissioned in October last year and recently completed, reflects the opinion of experts on several issues connected with the Arctic, like topics relating to economic activities, environmental changes, security, research and development, and the situation of indigenous peoples.

The study will be introduced by Director of the Estonian Foreign Policy Institute Kristi Raik and Research Fellow Frank Jüris, Research Fellow of the International Centre for Defence and Security Tõnis Idarand and Associate Professor at the Department of Ethnology of the Institute of Cultural Research of the University of Tartu Aimar Ventsel.

The public sitting will start at 2 p.m., and it will be streamed online.

The video recording of the sitting will be available on the Riigikogu YouTube channel.

Riigikogu Press Service
Liisa Johanna Lukk
Phone: +372 631 6456, +372 5331 0789
E-mail: [email protected]
Questions: [email protected]