The Present and Future Prospects
Changing Times – Director’s Greeting
We live in a time when endurance, self-discipline and sacrifices are expected of each and every one of us for several months to come due to the epidemic that is rampant in our world. Movement in our countries and especially in our border region is already dysfunctional. The adoption of travel restrictions over national borders – even here in the Nordic countries – has once again reminded us of the existence of borders, and we have come to appreciate how important, privileged and beneficial it is to be able to work unrestrictedly.
Many of us are only now starting to feel the approaching crisis; priorities have been turned upside down and many daily assignments can feel challenging when working from home. We are also reminded of how important human interaction is when building cooperative relationships. Technology can replace most things, but not encounters between people.
However, it is now immensely important to avoid needless deaths and bankruptcies at all costs and to save as many jobs as possible to avoid a severe economic recession. We are all affected by this. Nonetheless, we must not let ourselves be paralyzed, although the future is uncertain and recovery will take time. We will face new major challenges even as we must deal with the existing challenges from before the crisis.
Confidence in the future has never been more important. Our efforts for the future are needed and we will work uninterruptedly and tirelessly towards our goals – in other words, the Kvarken Council will continue to develop the Kvarken region into a functional, competitive and well-integrated border region. This applies to all sectors. After the crisis, it will become especially important to create recovery and growth opportunities for the tourism industry and the economic life in the Kvarken region, to help our innovative businesses find new growth opportunities, and to contribute with results that may prove useful even in a Nordic perspective. The regional electric flight initiative coordinated by the Kvarken Council – which you will get to read more about in news on our website kvarken.org – will play a significant role in this. It is an innovative and pioneering project that supports regional development and the service structure, improves communications, enhances operational preconditions for the economic life and the tourism industry, and supports the region’s innovation development. We will keep our fingers and toes crossed that the project receives funding in the Botnia-Atlantica programme’s ongoing application cycle.
Opportunities always open up after a crisis. I personally believe that our safe, innovative, business-friendly, clean, reliable and sparsely populated areas in the northern parts of the Nordic countries will become more attractive than ever as places to travel, work and live. Let’s look to the future and do our part!
Forwards – together.