NATO Secretary General Stoltenberg will speak about how the transatlantic alliance is adapting to change in this turbulent period. President Biden has clearly signaled that he is resolved to reach out to the NATO allies, working to repair the trans-Atlantic bond. To strengthen the bond between America and Europe and prepare the alliance for the future, the Secretary General has launched the NATO 2030 initiative. This includes proposals on how NATO can better harness technology and innovation, tackle the security implications of climate change, and help make our societies more resilient. While NATO must continue to deter and defend against Russia, it is also keeping channels open to Moscow. The rise of China presents both challenges and opportunities that NATO has started to address. And missions in Afghanistan and Iraq are on the cusp of change, with decisions underway about what role NATO will play in the future. All in all, an exciting time to hear from NATO’s Secretary General.
About the Speaker:
Jens Stoltenberg became NATO Secretary General in October 2014, following a distinguished international and domestic career. As a former Prime Minister of Norway and UN Special Envoy, Mr. Stoltenberg has been a strong supporter of greater global and transatlantic cooperation. Mr. Stoltenberg’s mandate as NATO Secretary General has been extended until the end of September 2022.
Under Mr. Stoltenberg’s leadership, NATO has responded to a more challenging security environment by implementing the biggest reinforcement of its collective defence since the Cold War, increasing the readiness of its forces and deploying combat troops in the eastern part of the Alliance. He believes in credible deterrence and defence while maintaining dialogue with Russia. He has also advocated for increased defence spending and better burden sharing within the Alliance, and a greater focus on innovation. NATO has also stepped up its efforts in the fight against terrorism. He strongly supports a partnership approach, with cooperation between NATO and the European Union reaching unprecedented levels.
Before coming to NATO, he was the UN Special Envoy on Climate Change from 2013 to 2014. He has also chaired UN High-level Panels on climate financing and the coherence between development, humanitarian assistance and environmental policies.
As Prime Minister of Norway, Mr. Stoltenberg increased the defence spending and transformed the Norwegian armed forces with new high-end capabilities and investments. He also signed an agreement with Russia on establishing maritime borders in the Barents and Polar Sea, ending a 30-years dispute.
Mr. Stoltenberg was also Prime Minister during the deadly terrorist attacks, which killed 77 people in Oslo and Utøya on 22 July 2011, urging in response, “more democracy, more openness, and more humanity, but never naïvete”.
Mr Stoltenberg holds a postgraduate degree in Economics from the University of Oslo. After graduating in 1987, he held a research post at the National Statistical Institute of Norway, before embarking on a career in Norwegian politics.
- 2005-2013: Prime Minister of Norway
- 2002-2014: Leader of the Norwegian Labor Party
- 2000-2001: Prime Minister of Norway
- 1996-1997: Minister of Finance
- 1993-1996: Minister of Industry and Energy
- 1991-2014: Member of Parliament
- 1990-1991: State Secretary at the Ministry of the Environment
- 1985-1989: Leader of the Norwegian Labour Youth
Jens Stoltenberg was born in Oslo on 16 March 1959. He is married to Ingrid Schulerud. They have two grown-up children.