Board Member Per Nylén’s Greeting

Cooperation in the Kvarken Region is important; many things undoubtedly unify us and can offer us advantages now and in the future. We – a delegation of politicians and officials from the Municipality of Örnsköldsvik – were given the chance to visit Vaasa in October. During the visit, we met with representatives from the economic life, the city and the region. We were naturally also told about the cross-border work performed by the Kvarken Council. The various meetings emphasized the importance of looking outside our own region, daring to lift our gaze and cooperating across borders.

We are sometimes restrained by borders. We allow municipal or regional boundaries to hinder our development and growth. The same can also be said for state borders – a line on a map can make it more difficult to find common solutions for the future.

Here, the role of the Kvarken Council as a catalyst and coordinator is indispensable. It is immensely important to create cross-border cooperation and projects via contacts, networks and good relations. Regardless of whether one operates from Örnsköldsvik, Vaasa, Skellefteå or Kokkola, the importance of collective efforts is the key to everything.

Cleantech Kvarken is one of the many examples of cross-border projects that aim to highlight our mutual region. It encompasses future sectors within the energy, forestry, IT and life science industries – all with the environment and climate-smart economy as the common denominators. It was gratifying to read how Sweden’s Minister for Rural Affairs, Mr Sven-Erik Bucht, and Finland’s Minister of Economic Affairs, Mr Olli Rehn, stated in the EUobserver that Finland and Sweden should take the lead in the transition to a fossil-free bioeconomy. Doesn’t the Kvarken Region sound like an obvious platform for this future project?

I would like to finish by sincerely thanking everyone who enabled our delegation’s interesting and rewarding visit to the Vaasa Region. We have every reason to be proud of our historical cooperation, and we will definitely continue to lead the way in the future – let’s tackle new challenges together!

Per Nylén
Municipal Commissioner
The Municipality of Örnsköldsvik


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