Canada to Assume Chairmanship of Arctic Council

May 12, 2013 - The Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, Minister of Health, Minister of the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency and Minister for the Arctic Council, will travel to Kiruna, Sweden, this week for the May 15 meeting of ministers of the Arctic Council states. The meeting marks the end of Sweden’s chairmanship of the Arctic Council (2011-2013) and the beginning of Canada’s two-year chairmanship (2013-2015). The Arctic Council is the leading body for international cooperation in the Arctic region.

“Canada is proud of the leadership the Arctic Council is taking on issues of importance to the people of the North,” said Minister Aglukkaq. “By signing the agreement on Arctic marine oil pollution preparedness and response, we are enhancing cooperation to protect the marine environment and the livelihoods of Northern communities.”

Through the overarching theme of Development for the People of the North, Canada’s chairmanship will put Northerners first. The focus will be on responsible Arctic resource development, safe Arctic shipping and sustainable circumpolar communities.

Canada’s chairmanship will also see the Arctic Council establish a circumpolar business forum to foster circumpolar economic development and provide opportunities for business to engage with the Council.

Following the meeting in Kiruna, Minister Aglukkaq will travel to Oulu and Helsinki, Finland, to meet with representatives of the local business community and Northern researchers. She will also visit an institute for Sami language, education and culture.

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Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada
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Cailin Rodgers
Office of the Honourable Leona Aglukkaq
Minister of Health, Minister of the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency and Minister for the Arctic Council
613-957-0200