Arctic Council meeting in Ruka, Kuusamo

Ministry for Foreign Affairs 11.3.2019 9.23
News item

The meeting of the Committee of Senior Officials of the Arctic Council, to be held in Ruka in the Finnish Lapland on 12–14 March, brings together representatives from the eight Arctic countries, six indigenous peoples’ organisations, six Working Groups, and more than 30 countries and organisations with observer status.

The discussions will focus on finalising the initiatives and projects on the agenda during Finland’s Chairmanship of the Arctic Council before the Ministerial Meeting in May.  

During the two-year Chairmanship Finland has focused on four priority themes:

•environmental protection

•telecommunications and connectivity

•meteorological cooperation

•education and training

At the meeting in Ruka the Working Groups of the Arctic Council will present the results of the work they have done on these themes. The meeting will provide a brief overview on Finland’s two-year Chairmanship and what has been done and achieved.

Snowboarding at Ruka in 2080?

In connection with the meetings during Finland’s Chairmanship, the Ministry for Foreign affairs has also organised several events for the general public. The aim is to tell about the Arctic Council and its work, and why each particular location was selected as the venue for the meetings.

The public event in Kuusamo ‘Snowboarding at Ruka in 2080?’ will be held at the Kuusamo upper secondary school on Thursday 14 March at 15.00. Among the topics to be discussed is what winters will be like in future and how we should prepare for them. Kalle Kankaanpää, Director of the Unit for Northern Europe at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, will take a look at the work done by the Arctic Council, and Researcher Ilona Mettiäinen from the Arctic Centre will talk about the future of snow. Snowboarder and Ambassador of the Protect Our Winters movement Miikka Hast will tell about what each and every one can do to save the winters.

The Arctic Council is an international forum tasked with promoting the wellbeing of the Arctic environment and the people living in the region. Finland holds the Chairmanship of the Arctic Council in 2017–2019, and within Finland the work on Arctic cooperation is coordinated by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs. Finland’s Chairmanship will culminate with the foreign ministers’ meeting to be held in Rovaniemi in May 2019. After Finland the Arctic Council Chairmanship will be taken over by Iceland.

Finland’s Chairmanship of the Arctic Council in 2017–2019