Polar Affairs Department

The Polar Affairs Department is responsible for coordinating matters relating to the polar regions in the central government administration – the Arctic, including Svalbard and Jan Mayen, and the Antarctic.

One important instrument in this work is the Interministerial Committee on the Polar Regions – a Government advisory body that discusses all matters of importance to the administration of the polar regions. The Ministry of Justice and Public Security chairs the committee and the department is responsible for the secretariat.

The office of the Governor of Svalbard, which receives its operating funds via the Svalbard budget, is administratively subordinate to the Polar Affairs Department. The department also participates in international processes concerning the Arctic and the Antarctic.