Prime Minister attended International Arctic Forum in St Petersburg

Prime Minister Stefan Löfven attended the International Arctic Forum in St Petersburg on 9 April and, in connection with the conference, held bilateral talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin. The theme of this year’s Forum was sustainable growth in the Arctic region.

The Government pursues an active Arctic policy, particularly on issues linked to climate change. The conference in St Petersburg was an important opportunity for political dialogue with Russia and other participating countries, including Finland, Norway and Iceland, about these global challenges.

In connection with the conference, Mr Löfven had a bilateral meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin. The meeting was an opportunity to express Sweden’s policy with respect to relations with Russia. The Government is seeking enhanced cooperation with Russia on issues of interest to Sweden, including trade, the environment and climate, and health.

There is also a strong interest in enhancing people-to-people contacts, particularly between civil society organisations. At the same time, Mr Löfven clearly communicated Sweden’s position of principle with respect to Russia’s aggression towards Ukraine and its conduct in our neighbourhood. Recent developments with respect to human rights and democracy were also raised at the meeting. During his visit to St Petersburg, Mr Löfven also met representatives of Russian civil society and Swedish businesses.