26.10.2023 · Løgmálaráðið

Landsstýrismaðurin setti Polar Law Symposium 2023

Landsstýrismaðurin setti Polar Law Symposium 2023

Bjarni Kárason Petersen, landsstýrismaður í lógarmálum, setti í morgun ráðstevnuna Polar Law Symposium 2023 í Kongshøll.

Røðan kann lesast niðanfyri.

Dear Ladies and Gentlemen

It is a pleasure and an honour to join you here today at The Polar Law Symposium 2023.

Ahead of you are some eventful days. It is a privilege for me - on behalf of the government - to somehow set the scene and place The Faroese Islands into context.


It is a fact that the Faroe Islands know more about the world, than the world knows about The Faroe Islands.

Back in time one of our greatest writers, William Heinesen, named the Faroes “the magical islands”. Representing the safest core in the world. This reasoned by a magical atmosphere covering our isolated mountain islands in the middle of nowhere. He portraited the Faroes being as a tiny grain of sand on a big dance floor.


The isolation over time has indeed preserved our language and created a sense of unity.  However, the Faroes can no longer be portrait as isolated and in the middle of nowhere.

In fact, the Faroes are indeed in the centre of it all.

We are the new frontier. And we are closer than ever to the world around us. A world which continues to educate, attract, and threaten.

As part of the Arctic, we are in the middle of a high-tension area. Fish stocks changing, ecosystems changing, the ocean becoming more sour, new navigation routes and so on. We are taking steps into hopeful directions. An example of this is the Paris Agreement on climate change. But all in all, many opportunities and challenges resemble among arctic societies. This is why I see great value in an association like this one where a distinguished gathering of people from such a broad range of backgrounds and interest in law can meet, inspire, and learn from one another.


As minister of Justice - which in fact is a new ministry in the Faroes – my focus in on strengthening legal attitude, legal proceeding, and legal custom in the Faroese legal system.

Being a micro society, the easier solution might be to import ideas and approaches from larger societies around us. Regardless the subject being economic life, culture, law, or something else.

However, it is essential that we do things our way and create our own ideas and approaches.

A legal system is living, organic and a way of covering an entire society and individual’s everyday life. It is where our perception of what is right and wrong is conceived and developed. The easiest thing in the world is to establish a system. But how do we develop the right fit for our society? We all differ in size, circumstances, and challenges. Especially Arctic societies compared to others.

We need to focus on creating a smarter legal society taking basis in our own circumstances. It is all about seeing the big picture: namely, how law and justice are a part of our society.


Looking back 2-3 years we currently live in a time of anxiousness and conflict. For this reason, it is important that we stand together and thrive for law and order. Coming together, as we are doing right now, strengthens the field and association. This way we have even greater opportunities in shaping the field of law in our Arctic societies for many years ahead.


With these few words, I wish you all a good symposium. A special thanks to the organizers from the University of Faroe Islands for hosting this event. And a warm welcome to the centre of it all. Enjoy your visit here in the Faroe Islands.

Thank you.