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Prime Minister David Cameron has hosted the Nordic Baltic Summit which saw politicians, policy innovators, entrepreneurs and business leaders discuss how best to boost economic growth, enterprise and job creation whilst improving people's well being.
The Premiers of Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania joined the Prime Minister for the talks.
Mr Cameron said that the nine countries that participated could form “the avant garde delivering jobs and growth” and lead Europe back to prosperity.
David Cameron said:
Right across the North of Europe there stretches an alliance of common interests.
We get enterprise. We embrace innovation. We understand the potential of green technologies for economic growth. So at a time when much of Europe is in desperate need of fundamental economic reform, it makes sense for us to come together for the benefit of all our economies: an ‘avant garde’ for jobs and growth.
Gender equality was one of the issues at the top of the agenda and followed Nick Clegg’s announcement on Monday outlining plans to give couples more freedom to organise their parental leave after the birth of a baby.
The PM said:
Today’s discussions showed very clearly how much Britain has to learn from other countries in terms of women’s participation in the workforce, levels of female entrepreneurship, family-friendly businesses and levels of childcare - and also levels of well-being among children.
The Summit concluded with a number of significant trade deals between the UK and its international partners. Lord Green said the deals were a big boost “not only for the companies involved but for the trade relationships between our countries”.
The Prime Minister also said there were plans for a follow-up conference in Sweden next year.
Read more: Nordic Baltic Summit website
Speeches and transcripts: PM’s speech at the Nordic Baltic Summit
Published: 19 January 2011