The political programme of the NCF is the political foundation of the organization. On this page, you will find our policies and values on a broad range of topics.
Education and Research
NCF believes that education is the key to social mobility . We want to ensure that everybody has educational opportunities across borders in Norden. This gives freedom to the individual and secures a better allocation of the workforce.
We believe in greater cross-border cooperation in the field of research and education. "Nordic cooperation leads to more ambitious research projects with access to greater funding and a larger pool of expertise. We want education on all levels to provide equal learning possibilities for all students.
With technological development and digitalization, learning does not end at one's educational path. Lifelong learning must be recognized and supported in the Nordics so that people are able to navigate in a rapidly changing labour market.
There should be an automatic recognition of education degrees at all levels throughout the Nordics. It should be made easier to enter the secondar y and tertiary level education in an other Nordic country. Furthermore, the importance of close research cooperation and the continuous sharing of research results should be emphasized. State funding for research should be adequate and guaranteed.
Despite the importance of high-quality research, other educational institutions must not be forgotten. The resources for developing vocational schools should be increased.
We believe that public education at all levels should be free of charge. The necessary material and equipment used for studies should also be available to the students. Students on all levels should always have the right and opportunity to have influence on their education and evaluate their classes and courses.
Nordic education institutions should focus on the quality of teaching and learning instead of just testing the students. When allocating funding for education, this overall goal should be the key priority.
Employment and movement
The labour market is the single most important part of any economy. It's where people from all parts of society meet, contribute and can be a part of a community. The labour market should be flexible and secure, both for the employer and employee.
We believe that the free market economy is the most preferable system for generating wealth and a prosperous society. However, we want a social safety net that provides the labour force security and at the same time not discourage people from working. We also acknowledge that a state regulation is needed in order to prevent market failures and facilitate labour market cooperation.
The labour market must allow for different life situations. We want parents to be able to take equal parental leave where one third of the total leave period is earmarked for each parent and the last third is free for the parents to share between them as they wish. We need to stress the importance of parents of all constellations having the same possibilities of raising their children. Special parental leave arrangements can be made for families in a special situation.
We also want individuals to be able to start their own business with the necessary support from the state and educational system.
The labour market must become more flexible and allow for different life situations. Nordic citizens should be able to move, study, work and live in all Norden as easy as possible, and all forms of cross-border obstacles should be removed. The recruitment of labour from other Nordic countries should be easier both employers and employees.
We support the idea of a Nordic citizenship where all Nordic citizens are treated equally in the country they live in. In practice this means that for example a Swede living in Denmark will be treated as a Dane and will be able to live on Danish terms from day one and vice versa. This also includes a way of recognizing all Nordic social security numbers and further develop the Nordic electronic identity card.
From education to employment
People should have the opportunity to change careers during their lifetime. We support further education while working. This also secures a competent workforce in changing economic times.
It’s important for higher education institutions to have a personal development aim as well as a job-related scope with their activities. . It is important for students to be able to get work training during studies in order to enter the labour market and get relevant experience.
We believe it is important to exchange knowledge across borders and allow people to study abroad. This increases cultural understanding, economic integration and innovation, builds networks and this enhances both the students’ educational life and the cooperation between the involved countries.
Norden should continuously work to increase mobility in education as well as on the labour market. Sharing knowledge and providing proper counselling is essential to these goals.
Environment, Energy & Transportation
NCF believes in keeping the planet as unharmed as possible by human activity. We believe that present and future generations deserve to breathe fresh air, swim in clean waters and experience the wonders of untouched nature.
We therefore believe that a common Nordic energy and climate policy can enhance the Nordic region as the forerunner in sustainable solutions. This will strengthen Nordic competitiveness and the Nordic impact on international climate goals. This strategy should address the environment, energy and transportation of the Nordic region.
Energy and environmental infrastructure
The Nordic energy policy should consist of various forms of energy that complement each other. Energy policies should be based on lifecycle emissions and take into account regional differences. Nuclear power plants and fossil fuels should gradually be replaced by safe, sustainable and renewable forms of energy. Energy efficiency is a long-term investment that must be encouraged. It is important to further develop energy carriers, for example by strengthening NordGrid and NordPool.
Pollution and emissions
Norden should meet the 1,5 degree target set in the Paris Agreement. A high degree of sustainability, biodiversity and energy efficiency should all be common goals. Recycling is a good example of a successful common Nordic environmental infrastructure. A case in point would be a common deposit-system for bottles. We also need to cut the emissions especially within the energy and agricultural sectors by making a sustainable use of our natural resources. Food safety and
security, local production and security of supply chains play a crucial role in the future, as the population of the globe grows and climate change accelerates. Norden should support developing countries in their pursuit of better environmental solutions by investing in clean tech.
Research, development and innovation
It is essential to secure funding for research on sustainable energy sources and technology to make certain that energy production meet future needs. NCF wants a Nordic trust that can fund research and development. Existing and new Nordic cleantech research programmes should also be strengthened. Positive results of research should be effectively implemented in society.
Transportation and infrastructure
Norden should be a international forerunner in green transport and logistics. NCF wants the Nordic region to become a green transport corridor and region. A functioning infrastructure is a prerequisite for individuals to be able to make sustainable choices. Efficient transport and logistics as well as development of modern transportation for goods are also crucial for Norden to have a prosperous and competitive industry.
NCF urges Norden to form a common green transit infrastructure network to make it a viable alternative to aviation and road transport of goods. Trains operation between Nordic countries could be subject to competition. We should also aim for a greener fleet of ships operating in the Nordic area.
Ambitious goals for the use of sustainable biofuels in aviation should be set on a Nordic level and reached in the near future.
In the areas where it is appropriate, public transport should always be a strong alternative to private cars. In more sparsely populated areas with long distances, cars will continue to play an important role. It is therefore important that these cars are environmentally friendly. Carpooling should be encouraged, and it should be facilitated to make it easier and more available.
The interest in the Arctic area is increasing on a global level. The Arctic has many possibilities, but environmental damage in the area affect multiple parties. Not only does the degradation of the area affect its unique wildlife, it also affects the four million people which inhabit the area. Of the human inhabitants, ten percent are indigenous. The Arctic question is not limited by national borders and therefore calls for international solutions. The population of the Arctic region should have a part in the decision making when it affects them.
Norden must work together to minimize the adverse effects of human activities and climate change in the Arctic. Arctic cooperation amongst Norden must be strengthened - mainly through the Arctic Council - both in terms of strengthening accident prevention capacity and nature conservation. NCF acknowledges the future possibilities of the region but emphasize the importance of the unique environment in the Arctic. The sensitive environment in the Arctic region should be protected against exploitation, e.g. through different environmental demands and regulations and completely prohibited in the Arctic ice pack. An environmental impact assessments shall be mandatory for all oil, gas or mineral extraction in the Arctic region.
Norden should further develop and strengthen the common Arctic policy, in order to facilitate the cooperation and decision-making progress in the Arctic Council. An international treaty for the Arctic region is needed, emphasizing the importance of a nuclear free zone in the Arctic. The countries with seaports in the Arctic region plays a crucial role when the ship traffic increase in the region. A strong coast-guard with good cooperation, with operating bases in the north are needed in the future to give security for the environment and sustainable development of the economic possibilities . All sorts of military escalation and tension in the Arctic area should be avoided in the area.
Human rights in the Arctic region
A Nordic priority must be to preserve the rights and traditions of indigenous people by implementing the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights by the United Nations, along with the guidelines set up by OECD. All Nordic countries who have not yet ratified the ILO 169 Convention should do so.
Equality and Human Rights
Each individual is unique and has immeasurable value. We therefore believe in human rights that ensure the fundamental rights of the individual. Striving for equality is essential for upholding the ideas behind human rights. Without equality, there is no equal opportunity for everyone, therefore NCF believes in fighting discrimination of all kinds to ensure equal opportunities and rights for all.
The Rights of Minorities
The rights of minorities must be safeguarded, and the majority should take their responsibility in order to make sure that everyone’s rights are upheld. No one should be discriminated on the basis of their background. Minorities have the right to establish, maintain and get support for their own associations. The rights of sexual, gender, religious, ethnic and language minorities and people with disabilities should be given special attention. The rights of the Sami should be respected.
Privacy and Property Rights
The individual's privacy and property rights must be safeguarded, both on- and offline. Mass surveillance by governments and private actors is a breach of the right to privacy and personal integrity . Everyone should own the rights of what they have created, whether it is material or immaterial. Copyright should not make distribution impossible.
Gender equality is a human right and achieving equal rights should be a top priority. Regardless of gender, all people are entitled to live with dignity without fear of harassment and abuse. In this regard, gender is also to be understood as cisgender, transgender and non-binary.
Much progress has been achieved in recent years, however, women still have fewer opportunities than men with regards to benefit from economic development and with challenges regarding equal participation in the labour. Women are still under-represented in leadership positions, while men may find it difficult to enjoy an equal right to family life.
NCF believes we should work politically to ensure a better balance between men and women in these areas, but also recognizes that the solutions must respect the autonomy of the individual and the family as much as possible.
Foreign Policy & Security
NCF believes that Norden should be a stable actor in an unstable world and promote peace in areas of unrest. Norden should aim to meet these goals through a strong cooperation in foreign-, development- and security policy.
The United Nations
NCF recognizes the need for strong and dynamic leadership of the United Nations (UN) and its important role in the international community. We need a well-formed, well structured and fair multilateral international community . We believe that Norden should act as an entity in the UN to gain as much leverage as possible. Norden will always push for diplomatic solutions to international crises and strive to uphold a treaty-based international order that respects the rule of law.
Development and trade policy
The development aid should be at least 1.0 percent of GNI in all Nordic countries. Norden should increase the development funds accordingly in times of crisis. Development aid should benefit the recipient country's population, focusing on civil society, inclusive democratic institutions, transparent public administration, the promotion of human rights and environmental sustainability. Development aid should not be used as leverage or political pressure on the recipient country.
Nordic trade policy should focus on enhancing trade partnerships between Nordic businesses and actors in the global south with emphasis on small and medium-sized enterprises, also taking into account the promotion of development. Trade agreements need to follow principles of sustainability, democracy, justice, human rights and equality.
Norden is facing the challenge of economic pressure and increased regional tension. Therefore it is crucial that we are able to cooperate. Nordic military co-operation within NORDEFCO should be prioritised and further deepened and widened, e.g. regarding materiel acquisitions and military training. A committee on defence and security should be created in the Nordic Council. The Nordic countries should be able to provide cross-border military and non-military assistance to each other at request, even at a short notice.