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European relationships strengthened

Published: 16 Sep 2021 14:26
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International

COP26, trade and historic links to be discussed with Nordic and Baltic nations.

Collaborative projects for COP26, the Wellbeing Economy and the key strategic and trade importance of the Nordic and Baltic nations are to be at the centre of increased Scottish Government international engagement.

Following the pledge in the Programme for Government to increase links with the Nordic countries, External Affairs Secretary Angus Robertson will today meet representatives of all the Nordic and Baltic nations at Scotland House, the Scottish Government’s permanent presence in London.

Matters of joint concern will include the Wellbeing Economy partnership between Scotland, Iceland and Finland, and the CivTech Alliance, with members from Estonia, Lithuania and Denmark, which is looking at better ways to deliver public services and encourage digital collaboration.

COP26 will feature prominently through collaborative projects which address energy efficiency, peatland restoration, carbon capture technology, sustainable living and forest management.

These nations are among Scotland’s closest neighbours and important trade partners in Europe and discussions will address many common concerns and challenges, including trade, investment and rural sustainability.

As part of measures to strengthen international links, the Scottish Government also plans to open a new office in Copenhagen early next year.

External Affairs Secretary Angus Robertson said:

“We share deep cultural and historical ties with the Nordic and Baltic nations, with whom we have so much in common, and a mutual sense of affinity that stretches far beyond geographical proximity.

“COP26 will enable exactly the kind of international collaboration that this Scottish Government values, with new ways of working on shared global challenges, highlighting both the power of innovation and the importance of working together to support a green recovery from the pandemic.

“Our new office in Copenhagen will further enhance our international network. These offices attract investment, promote Scottish expertise and bring benefits to the people of Scotland.”

Background

Nordic countries are key trade partners for Scotland – in 2018, Scottish exports to the Nordics were worth over £2.6bn.

The Scottish Government’s export growth plan includes Norway, Sweden and Denmark among Scotland’s top 15 export markets, particularly for Net Zero (energy, ClimateTech), digital technologies, advanced manufacturing and life sciences.  

The meetings will be the first ministerial engagements held at Scotland House since it re-opened following closure during the COVID pandemic.

The Scottish Government’s Programme for Government 

In September 2019, the Scottish Government published Arctic Connections, Scotland’s Arctic policy framework.