Russia has sought to assert its influence over wide areas of the Arctic in competition with the United States, Canada, Denmark and Norway as shrinking polar ice from the warming planet offers new opportunities for resources and shipping routes. China also has shown an increasing interest in the region, which is believed to hold up to one-fourth of the Earth’s undiscovered oil and gas.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has cited estimates that put the value of Arctic mineral riches at $30 trillion.
“The Arctic is changing rapidly, owing to the impact of global warming, increased competition for natural resources and geopolitical rivalries," said Josep Borrell, the bloc's top diplomat. “These developments show that Europe must define its geopolitical interests broadly to promote stability, safety and peaceful cooperation in the Arctic.”
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