Steingrímur J. Sigfússon, the Speaker of Iceland’s Althingi, is leading a delegation to New Zealand to discuss topics ranging from renewable energy to tourism.
The delegation includes Helgi Hrafn Gunnarsson, Deputy Speaker of the Althingi and a member of the Pirate Party; and Hanna Katrín Friðriksson, Chair of the Parliamentary Group of the Liberal Reform Party.
Over a busy programme, the delegation will receive a briefing by Eastland Energy at the Te Ahi O Maui geothermal power station and visit New Zealand food producers and marketers.
They will then land in Wellington where they will meet with the Speaker Rt Hon Trevor Mallard, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Tourism New Zealand, and Ministers and MPs.
This visit is significant as it is the first visit by an Iceland Speaker to New Zealand. However, it won’t be Steingrímur's first visit to the country, as he stayed on a farm in Northland as a teenager.
“The bilateral relationship between Iceland and New Zealand is a nascent but very promising one. We have many significant industries in common, such as tourism, fisheries, and renewable energy. The two countries also share views on many global issues,” says Trevor.
“I look forward to welcoming Steingrímur and his delegation to New Zealand, and hope our discussions contribute to strengthened cooperation and growth in the relationship between our two countries.”
The programme runs from Sunday, February 9 to Thursday, February 13.