New assembly to discuss Arctic issues

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ArcticRapid changes in the Arctic have led to the formation of a new assembly for international cooperation, in a bid to discuss the many issues that affect the region.

The Arctic Circle will convene for the first time in Reykjavik, Iceland from 12th to 14th October, though Iceland’s President, Ólafur Ragnar Grimsson, will outline the aims of the new assembly at a lunch at the National Press Club in Washington DC on Monday (15th April).

The mission of The Arctic Circle is to convene a diverse group of stakeholders in an annual gathering to facilitate dialogue and build relationships to confront the Arctic’s greatest challenges.

As the fastest-warming place on Earth, the Arctic is moving to the centre of the geopolitical stage and it is playing an increasingly important role in globalisation, economic development, energy exploration, environmental protection and international security. New sea routes linking Asia to Europe and America in a new way have also led to an increased focus on the region.

Issues that will be discussed by the assembly include shipping and transportation, fisheries and ecosystem management, sea ice melt and extreme weather, security implications and natural resources.

The assembly will meet in a different Arctic location each year.