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The International Symposium on Northern Development is under way

Québec City, February 25, 2015 – Today marks the opening of the first International Symposium on Northern Development. Co-chaired by the Québec government and the Nordic Council of Ministers and organized in collaboration with Université Laval, the Symposium has assembled the representatives of the Nordic countries, the universities, northern populations, including the Aboriginal nations, and businesspeople and companies, to discuss various facets of northern development.

Québec is a resolutely northern society. Our geographic location places us in a unique context to develop, protect, safeguard and restore the territory, in collaboration with the Aboriginal peoples. It is our responsibility to ensure that we develop the North in a spirit of respect for the principles of sustainable development. To this end, exchanges of good practices and closer collaboration with the Nordic Council of Ministers and its member countries are essential,” Québec Premier Philippe Couillard said.

Québec and the Nordic countries are geographically remote. However, the two regions are located in northern latitudes near the Arctic, which means that we are facing a number of shared challenges. The two regions are concerned with the development of the landscape and its environs, which are also among the most vulnerable to climate change. Both regions are facing significant choices concerning safe development by companies that protect the environment and communities with a view to ensuring the future of society in the northern regions and the Arctic. I believe that our regions can obviously benefit from cooperation,” added Secretary General of the Nordic Council of Ministers Dagfinn Høybråten.

Denis Brière, Rector of Université Laval, emphasized the importance of research in the northern development. “Northern development raises numerous social, economic, environmental, cultural or scientific challenges that all too often extend beyond the northern territories. Northern studies and Arctic research have spinoff whose scope must not be underestimated. This Symposium will afford us a valuable overview of the state of current knowledge on the North and research projects under way,” he noted.

Québec’s perspective of northern development reconciles its economic, environmental and social facets through the Northern Plan. However, our perspective also includes an important section centred on research and the development of knowledge. The International Symposium on Northern Development seeks to serve as a unifying event for all stakeholders in the North, including researchers, elected officials, businesspeople or the representatives of local or international populations, to share different approaches to northern development,” Minister of Energy and Natural Resources and Minister responsible for the Northern Plan Pierre Arcand added.

The International Symposium on Northern Development runs until February 27, 2015 at the Québec City Convention Centre. To consult the program, please visit Ce lien ouvrira une nouvelle fenêtre. www.plannord.gouv.qc.ca/fr/symposium.


Online as of: July 16, 2015

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