High North Atlantic kick-off

The High North Atlantic Business Alliance is an international business development project, including the port owners and business communities of the following seven port cities:

  • Tromsø, Norway
  • Tórshavn, Faroe Islands
  • Reykjavík, Iceland
  • Nuuk, Greenland
  • St. John’s and Argentia, Newfoundland, Canada
  • Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
  • Portland, Maine, USA

May 7th, in Tórshavn, the three year long project will have its first Steering Committee Meeting. The meeting will set the strategy for the project and the action plan for the first three years. The Steering Committee will report to the Arctic Circle Forum in Plenary Session May 8th: www.arcticcircle.org

The northernmost part of the Atlantic has an infrastructure for cargo through the
shipping lines of Eimskip and Royal Arctic Lines. The seven port cities have common industry sectors, especially in bioeconomics and tourism.

Background

Since 2013, the business community in Portland and Reykjavik has succeeded with
several joint business development projects. Portland and Maine have ambitions to
become the gateway between Northern Europe and the United States. Business and
government in Maine is targeted and well organized in relation to this role, including
the Maine North Atlantic Development Office, initiative of Maine International Trade
Center to increase trade and investment between Maine and markets of the North
Atlantic Region and develop Maine’s policy in Arctic affairs. The business sector and
the public sector have carried out an active outreach across the Nordic countries,
Greenland and Atlantic Canada.

Relations between Tromsø and Portland have been systematically established, with
activities since 2017, with two trade delegations from Maine to Tromsø and with a
delegation from Tromsø to Portland. In a relatively short time, several common
development opportunities have been identified and some projects have already
been realized.

In addition to increased trade volumes and business development, relations between especially Portland, Reykjavik and Tromsø have also led to cooperation in the cultural and university sectors.

This year, Canada announced the Ocean Supercluster with the vision to grow the
ocean economy into one of the most significant, sustainable, and valuable segments
of Canada’s economy.

Norwegian Aquaculture Industry is investing in Iceland, Atlantic Canada and Maine.
The Icelandic model for Ocean Clusters is exported to USA (New England and other
regions) and Norway.

Icelandic and Norwegian companies do business in the High North Atlantic Region, some examples are: IcelandAir, Hurtigruten, Eimskip, Grieg Seafood and Marine Harvest.

During the period October 2017 – February 2018, Ramboll and Haleyg have
conducted a partner search for the High North Atlantic Business Alliance, with
financial support from Nordic Council of Ministers’ North Atlantic Cooperation (NORA).

Joint business development between port cities in the northern part of the Atlantic.
NORA has advised the project to include at least three sectors:
(1) Ports: Port collaboration to ensure or safeguard that port infrastructure
development supports – or is aligned with – cross-border business development
strategies and actions.
Cross-border business development between Maine, USA; East Coast Canada,
Greenland, Iceland, Faroe Islands and Norway (with potential to expand to include
Ireland, United Kingdom and/or Northwest Russia during the project period).
(2) Bioeconomy: Collaboration between businesses for increased sustainability and
economic growth.
(3) Tourism: Collaboration between businesses for increased sustainability and
economic growth.

Overaching goal

Joint business development between port cities in the northern part of the Atlantic.

Cross-border business development between Maine, USA; East Coast Canada,
Greenland, Iceland, Faroe Islands and Norway (with potential to expand to include
Ireland, United Kingdom and/or Northwest Russia during the project period).

NORA has advised the project to include at least three sectors:

(1) Ports: Port collaboration to ensure or safeguard that port infrastructure
development supports – or is aligned with – cross-border business development
strategies and actions.
(2) Bioeconomy: Collaboration between businesses for increased sustainability and
economic growth.
(3) Tourism: Collaboration between businesses for increased sustainability and
economic growth.

Partners

Confirmed governing partners are:

Royal Arctic Line: Shipping company with an exclusive
concession for the transportation of all sea cargo to and from
Greenland and between the Greenlandic towns and
settlements
Sikuki Nuuk Harbour: Owner, operator and developer of port
areas in Nuuk.
Visit Greenland: Responsible for marketing the
country’s adventures and opportunities for guests wishing to
visit the world’s largest island.

Eimskip: A leading transportation company in the North
Atlantic with connections to international markets and is
specialized in worldwide freight forwarding service.
Arctic Circle Secretariat: The Arctic Circle is an international
organization with a Secretariat based in Reykjavík, Iceland
responsible for the organization of the Assemblies and
Forums, as well as for communications with Arctic Circle
partners, governments, media, and others interested in the
work of the Arctic Circle.
Faxaports: The company runs the harbours and ports of
Reykjavík, Grundartangi, Akranes and Borgarnes.

Port of Tórshavn: Largest port in Faroe Islands for
containerised cargo. Also services for fisheries and cruise.
Visit Tórshavn: Marketing office for Tórshavn.

Port of Tromsø: Port owner and port authority in Tromsø.
Norinnova Technology Transfer: Innovation-company
focusing on commercialization of technology- and research
based ideas.
Nofima: One of the largest institutes for applied research
within the fields of fisheries, aquaculture and food research
in Europe. Head office in Tromsø.
Visit Tromsø: Marketing office for the greater Tromsø region.

Port of Argentia: a heavy industrial seaport located on the
southeastern portion of the Island of Newfoundland.
Formerly the site of a U.S. Naval Base, Argentia is being
redeveloped with a diverse group of port users and tenants
involved in marine transportation, manufacturing,
information technology, construction, offshore oil, mining
and other sectors.
Placentia Area Chamber of Commerce: Closest business
community to Port of Argentia.
St. John’s Board of Trade: A not-for-profit organization
representing local business in the St. John’s area.

Port of Halifax: Port owner and port authority in Halifax.

Maine Port Authority: Owner of three cargo ports in Maine.
Maine North Atlantic Development Office (MENADO): an
initiative of Maine International Trade Center to increase
trade and investment between Maine and markets of the
North Atlantic Region and develop Maine’s policy in Arctic
affairs.
New England Ocean Cluster: NEOC promotes dynamic
networks and relationships among businesses and
entrepreneurs in the marine industry to collectively drive
new ideas forward and surface opportunities for
collaboration.

Project management

Haleyg’s Nils Arne Johnsen is organizer and project manager. The project secretariat consist of independent consultants in Tromsø, Copenhagen, Reykjavík, Nuuk, Halifax and Portland.

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