The EU is gradually formulating a policy on Arctic issues to address EU interests and responsibilities, while recognizing EU countries' legitimate interests and rights in the region.
The Communication "The European Union and the Arctic Region", issued by the European Commission in November 2008, established the first layer of an EU Arctic policy, set out EU interests and proposed action in various areas. The Council of the EU welcomed the Communication and issued Council conclusions on Arctic issues in December 2009.
The EU Arctic policy is built around three main policy objectives: protecting and preserving the Arctic in unison with its population; promoting sustainable use of natural resources; contributing to enhanced governance in the Arctic through implementation of relevant agreements, frameworks and arrangements, and their further development. SHOTLIST