European Commission - Directorate-General for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries

03/15/2024 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 03/15/2024 06:38

President von der Leyen inaugurates the EU Office in Nuuk and signs cooperation agreements to strengthen the EU-Greenland Partnership

Today, President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen is in Greenland to inaugurate the EU Office in Nuuk - Europe's concrete presence in Greenland and in the wider Arctic region.

Together with Prime Minister of Greenland Múte Bourup Egede, and in the presence of Prime Minister of Denmark Mette Frederiksen, President von der Leyen signed two cooperation agreements totalling almost €94 million, under Global Gateway, the EU investment strategy for the world. These will bring investments in education and skills on the island and support the clean energy transition.

President von der Leyen said: "Our new office in Nuuk marks the beginning of a new era of the EU-Greenland partnership, with Europe's concrete presence in Greenland and in the wider Arctic region. And with our two new agreements, we will invest in clean energy, critical raw materials and skills in Greenland. New jobs in Greenland, better security of supply for Europe; we can both benefit from greater cooperation in these areas."

The opening of an EU Office in Nuuk is part of the EU's Arctic strategy. It will facilitate collaboration between the EU and the government, the private sector and civil society, promote EU public and private investments in Greenland and deepen cooperation across a variety of fields, including education, renewable energy, critical raw materials and biodiversity protection.

The €71.25 million Education programme will further improve the quality of Greenland's education sector to empower the youth and provide the Greenland workforce with the skills needed for strategic economic sectors. The focus of this cooperation agreement is on vocational and technical education, innovative skills in primary education, and helping young Greenlanders who are not in education or employment to find their way back into schooling or work.

The €22.5 million Green Growth programme, the second cooperation agreement signed today, will invest in energy and critical raw materials value chains, environmental preservation, and research, to help diversify Greenland's economy and develop strategic industries like clean hydrogen.

EU-Greenland relationship

Greenland's status as an EU Overseas Country and Territory (OCT) underlines its unique relationship with the EU. In the period 2021-2027, Greenland benefits from €225 million from the EU in support of sustainable development, education and green growth sectors, including the €94 million signed today.

President von der Leyen's visit highlights the EU's commitment to invest in a sustainable, prosperous, and peaceful Arctic region. The Memorandum of Understanding on critical raw materials, signed in November 2023, reflects the shared commitment to sustainable resource development and positions Greenland as a strategic supplier of raw materials for Europe's green transition.

Global Gateway

The Global Gateway strategy is the EU's offer to partner countries in support of their resilience and sustainable development. This offer aims at narrowing the global investment gap with value-driven investments from public and private sectors, supporting global economic recovery and accompanying the twin green and digital transitions outside the EU. Across the world, Global Gateway aims to mobilise €300 billion in investments between 2021 and 2027 with a mix of grants, concessional loans and guarantees to de-risk private sector investments.

For more information

Factsheet on the EU-Greenland Partnership