Arctic Yearbook 2015 - Page 432

Briefing Note Exploring Reasons & Remedies for the EU’s Incapability to Devise an “Arctic Policy”: The Quest for Coherence Adam Stępień & Andreas Raspotnik The European Commission and the European External Action Service (EEAS) are, at the time of publishing of this year’s Arctic Yearbook, working on a new policy statement concerning the EU’s Arctic policy. The new communication, requested by the Council of the European Union, is likely to surface in the first half of 2016, slightly passing the original 2015 deadline (EU-Council 2014). In this Briefing Note, we focus on the formulation of the EU Arctic policy as an overarching framework, which so far has found its expression in declaratory statements (communications) from the Commission and the Union’s High Representative. Two main questions shine out: Why has it been so difficult to formulate a statement that meets expectations of analysts and Arctic actors and are we likely to see it finally occurring in 2016? 2016 would mark eight years since the Commission’s first communication on Arctic matters. Eight years during which the geopolitical “hot” Arctic turned into a realistic “cold” Arctic. Eight years during Adam Stępień is a researcher at the Arctic Centre in Rovaniemi. Andreas Raspotnik is Senior Analyst at The Arctic Institute in Washington, D.C.