(Sweden Ministry for Foreign Affairs, 14 May 2012) -- Minister for Foreign Affairs Carl Bildt will travel to Canada this week for political discussions primarily focusing on issues on the Arctic agenda. Mr Bildt will also visit the Arctic areas in Canada. Sweden currently holds the chair of the Arctic Council, which is a forum for cooperation between the five Nordic countries, Canada, Russia and the USA. The Arctic areas face many challenges and it is important to find a balance between environmental considerations and economic development for the Arctic to be able to develop. "Arctic region issues are a high priority for the Swedish Government and it is therefore important to discuss these issues with a central Arctic actor like Canada," says Mr Bildt. Sweden has held the chair of the Arctic Council since May 2011 and will pass on the Chairmanship to Canada at the foreign ministers' meeting in Kiruna in May 2013. On 16-17 May, Mr Bildt will be in Ottawa for talks with Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs John Baird, Minister of National Defence Peter Mackay and Minister of Health and Minister of the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency Leona Aglukkaq. On 17 May Mr Bildt will deliver a key policy speech at Carleton University under the heading 'Arctic Challenges and the Future Perspectives of Arctic Cooperation'. On 18-19 May Mr Bildt will visit Iqaluit in northern Canada, where he will meet Premier of Nunavut Eva Aariak and others.
Posted 16 May 2012; 4:08:24 PM. Permalink