The annual Nord i Sør conference gathers around 350 representatives of Northern Norwegian businesses, policy makers and public sector stakeholders to the capital city of Oslo in the beginning of January. Arranged on January 7, this year’s conference also highlighted the international aspect of Arctic business development through the Arctic Economic Council (AEC).

AEC’s Director Anu Fredrikson highlighted the economic development potential of the Arctic. In light of the global increase in the level of wealth, there will be a growing need for Arctic natural resources. As the Arctic gains more and more attention internationally the need for balanced information regarding the region and business in the Arctic increases. The Arctic has decades long history of industrial activity and an excellent track record in natural resource development, but this is not necessarily a well-known fact outside the region. Norwegian businesses provide a good example of forward-leaning stakeholders paving the way for greener solutions. These good examples should be made known globally.

With the growing global interest, new stakeholders wish to have a say in the development of the Arctic. Fredrikson called for the Arctic businesses’ involvement in this work to secure that decisions having an impact on the state of business in the Arctic are based on facts. She also called for a joint effort: The Arctic business community should be more proactive in informing of the work they do to fulfill the sustainability agenda.