A Seminar «25 Years of Barents Co-operation – Fostering Common Opportunities in the European Arctic» was held in Brussels on 5 June 2018. The event was organised by the Swedish Barents Euro-Arctic Council (BEAC) Chairmanship, as well as the Chairmanship of the Barents Regional Council held by the Norwegian province of Finnmark.
The participants, including the Russian Senior Official in BEAC Mr. Sergey Petrovich, a number of Nordic Ambassadors and provincial Governors, as well as members of the European Parliament and representatives of the European External Action Service, took stock of the Barents cooperation over the past years, exchanged views on the state of play and prospects of regional interaction in the North of Europe.
Speakers stressed the unique character of the Barents cooperation that ensures successful implementation of joint projects at national, regional and municipal levels. It was also noted that, despite current disagreements between Russia and Western countries, regional cooperation formats, in particular BEAC, remain an important channel for maintaining dialogue that allows parties to uphold positive agenda in their bilateral relations.
BEAC, launched in 1993, includes Russia, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden and the European Union.