Finland held the 11th Arctic Council Ministerial Meeting in Lappi Areena, Rovaniemi, Finland. The dignitaries from the 8 Arctic States had approved the work completed under the 2-year Finnish Chairmanship to enhance sustainable development and environmental conservation in the Arctic region.
- The Arctic States were joined by delegates from the Arctic Council’s Permanent Participant organizations, the heads of the 6 Working Groups, and Observers.
- Arctic States concluded the Arctic Council Ministerial meeting by signing a joint agreement as the Arctic Council Ministers meet, passed the Chairmanship from Finland to Iceland.
- As stated in the Rovaniemi Joint Ministerial Statement, the Arctic States ensured the Council’s commitment to keep Arctic peaceful, stabile and a region for constructive cooperation.
- In the session, Finland’s Foreign Minister, Timo Soini stated the Council’s achievements and gave guidance for the upcoming 2 years.
- In the meeting, the International Maritime Organization was authorized as a new Observer.
- The 1st executive meeting of Senior Arctic Officials in the Icelandic Chairmanship will be held in June in Reykjanesbær, Iceland.
- India was re-elected as an Observer to Arctic Council and India committed to contribute more to Arctic Council. India had received the Observer status in 2013 during the Kiruna Ministerial meeting in Sweden.
- Since year 2008, India has its Arctic research station, termed as ‘Himadri’ in Svalbard, Norway.