When Chinese premier Wen Jiabao visited Iceland in April, a framework agreement was signed between China and Iceland on Arctic Cooperation. As ice is melting in the Arctic Ocean, exploitation of the rich resources there will soon be much easier.
Iceland has the geographic advantage, while China the financial resources and technology. Cooperation between China and Iceland will be the best choice for the two countries as long as China does not become a bully.
As a specific step for such cooperation, according to China Ocean News, China’s icebreaker research ship the Xue Long is scheduled to visit Iceland in mid-August.
The paper says, “Chen Lianzheng, deputy administrator of China’s State Oceanic Administration, met Mrs. Kristin A. Arnadottir, Iceland ambassador to China, in Beijing on August 7 to discuss matters concerning China’s fifth Arctic scientific expedition team’s visit to Iceland in mid-August.”
Chen briefed the ambassador about the activities of the Chinese team. The team set out from Qingdao on July 2 and conducted investigation in North Arctic-Pacific fan-shaped area and then went northwest and reached the North Arctic-Atlantic fan-shaped area.
It is conducting investigation in the Norwegian Sea and Greenland, and plans to arrive at Iceland on August 16, when it has completed its investigation there.
Chen suggests that the two sides cooperate satisfactorily in organising the visiting activities and that Iceland provides necessary security safeguarding for the ship so that the visit will promote friendship between the peoples of the two countries..
Kristin says that the ship’s visit is very important for China and Iceland’s future oceanic and Arctic cooperation. Iceland will do its best to ensure that the visiting activities will be carried out smoothly and is willing to make greater contribution to the new breakthrough in the two countries’ oceanic cooperation and exchange and boost joint development of the two sides’ oceanic undertakings.
- China’s Wen in Iceland, eyes on Arctic riches (chinadailymail.com)
- You: Fat chance of war over the Arctic’s resources (japantimes.co.jp)
- RTCC Q&A: Why Shell’s Arctic adventure could have implications for us all (rtcc.org)