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‘Closer Faroes-EU relations’ promised on first ever official visit to Faroe by a EU Commission President

The President of the European Commissions, Ursula von der Leyen, together with Denmark’s Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen, paid a snap visit to the Faroe Islands earlier today. The EU Commission President met with a Faroese delegation headed by Prime Minister Aksel V. Johannesen and visited a few places, including the Glyvrar headquarters of salmon farmer Bakkafrost.

The visit sparked headlines in the media with speculation rampant on whether trade relations between the Faroes and the EU will at last start to improve along the lines that Faroese fish exporters have expressed their hopes for over several decades.

“The effort to enhance relations between the Faroe Islands and the EU has been ongoing for several years but today is the start of a new era in our collaboration,” Prime Minister Johannesen noted. “The changing global context makes it increasingly important to align closely with likeminded partners. The MoU will serve as a foundation for enhancing our cooperation with the EU.”

That MoU signed by Mr. Johannesen and Ms. von der Leyen was hailed as a “milestone” and “a new chapter in Faroese-EU relations” by the Government of the Faroe Islands.

“Prime Minister Aksel V. Johannesen and Commission President Ursula von der Leyen have today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), marking a milestone in Faroe Islands-EU relations,” the Government announced. “The document aims to establish a framework for the partnership, focusing on areas such as green transition, energy, climate change, digitalization and the Arctic, in addition to existing areas of cooperation on trade, fisheries and research.”

Under the heading “Mutual benefits and closer collaboration,” the Government further stated: “With the MoU signed, the focus will be on the implementation of the agreement. This marks the beginning of a new chapter in Faroe Islands-EU relations, promising closer cooperation for the benefit of both the Faroe Islands and the EU.”

The signing of the MoU took place at the Prime Minister’s Office in Tórshavn, we’re told, “during what was the first ever visit to the Faroe Islands by a European Commission President.”


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