Διακοινοβουλευτικές συνεδριάσεις

12th EU -West Nordic Council IPM, 7 December 2020, remote

Panoramic Icelandic view of black sand dunes with fresh green grass Panoramic Icelandic view of black sand dunes with fresh green grass
Panoramic Icelandic view of black sand dunes with fresh green grass © AdobeStock
The 12th EU-West Nordic Council IPM took place on the 7 December 2020, remote via WebEx. MEPs and WNC Bureau members exchanged views on the latest developments in the EU and the WNC region dominating the political discourse, most importantly related to the crisis created by the COVID-19 pandemic and its long-term consequences, but also other challenges and opportunities arising in the North. EU Ambassador at large for the Arctic, Mr Michael MANN gave an outline of the EU Arctic policy and the first results of the public consultation launched earlier this year by the European Commission and the European External Action Service about the way forward for the European Union's Arctic policy. The consultation seeks input on the strengths and shortfalls of the existing policy, with a view to preparing an updated approach.

The draft agenda and other meeting documents are available in the below links.

Once every year the DEEA holds meetings with members of the West Nordic Council, a cooperation forum for Iceland, the Faroe Islands and Greenland. Discussions here generally focus on Arctic policies and the North Atlantic cooperation. Meetings last from half a day to two full days, depending on the location and the programme of the meeting.

History:

The European Parliament has met with the West Nordic Council once a year since 2008. This encounter takes the form of an inter-parliamentary meeting and includes MEPs and representatives from Iceland, the Faroe Islands and Greenland.

11th EU-West Nordic Council IPM, 5 December 2019, Brussels

11th European Union - West Nordic Council Interparliamentary meeting
11th European Union - West Nordic Council Interparliamentary meeting, Brussels, 5 December 2020 © European Union 2019 – EP/Thierry Roge
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West Nordic Council delegation
11th European Union - West Nordic Council Interparliamentary meeting, Brussels, 5 Deceber 2019 © European Union 2019 – EP/Thierry Roge
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Meeting room and participants of the 11th European Union - West Nordic Council Interparliamentary meeting, Brussels, 5 Deceber 2019
11th European Union - West Nordic Council Interparliamentary meeting, Brussels, 5 Deceber 2019 © European Union 2019 – EP/Thierry Roge
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Flags of the European Union, Faroes, Greenland and Iceland
European Union - West Nordic Council Interparliamentary meeting © European Union 2019 – EP/Thierry Roge
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The EU-West Nordic Council (WNC) meets annually either in the WNC territories or in the European Parliament. As the last interparliamentary meeting took place in Reykjavik, on 13 February 2018, the 11th EU-West Nordic Council IPM was held in Brussels on 5 December 2019.

The meeting was chaired by Andreas SCHWAB, Chair of the DEEA.

MEPs and guests from Greenland, Iceland and the Faroe Islands presented their overview of the latest developments and activities in the region. Further on, the meeting focused on the Arctic affairs and the EU Arctic Policy.

Participants widely agreed on the need for the EU to be more engaged in the Arctic and to better communicate its current contribution, especially to research, as well as the potential of its cross border programs. Values and rules that the EU can bring to the region (democratic governance, respect for the international law, environmental standards, keeping Arctic low-tension area) should not be underestimated, therefore EU's presence needs to be strengthened, inter alia, by keeping it high on the agenda of the EU and of the EP.

Previous meetings

A summary of inter-parliamentary meetings held during the European Parliament's 8th term (2014-2019) can be found in the delegation's archives.