The 20th annual international economic and business conference, St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF), was organized on June 17-19, 2016. Since 1997, the SPIEF conference has gathered a significant amount of both Russian and international participants representing governments and business leaders, academia, media and civil society.

The Arctic Economic Council (AEC) was strongly represented at this year’s SPIEF. Both AEC vice chairs, Senior Executive Vice-President/Chief Operating Officer Evgeniy Ambrosov representing Sovcomflot, and Tero Vauraste, President & CEO of Arctia Ltd, participated in the event.

Mr Vauraste presented the work of the AEC at a high-level panel titled “International Cooperation for the Development of the Economic Potential of the Arctic zone”. Other panelists included, among others, ministers and active politicians, government representatives, business leaders, and Arctic experts.

In addition to providing a brief update about the rapid development of the AEC and the guiding principles of its work, Mr Vauraste also gave an insight into the planning of the upcoming Finnish chairmanship of the AEC. Finland will take over the two-year rotating chairmanship of the AEC in 2017. The overarching theme of the Finnish AEC chairmanship is “Sustainable Arctic”. The three key themes include Interconnected Arctic, Competent Arctic and Safe Arctic. These key themes will be interwoven through selected AEC business areas.

Photo: Arctic can be fun. AEC vice chairs Tero Vauraste (left) and Evgeniy Ambrosov represented the AEC at the 2016 St. Petersburg International Economic Forum./Tass News Agency