The first Parliamentary Conference concerning Arctic cooperation was held in Reykjavik, Iceland in 1993. The following Arctic parliamentary conferences have been held in Yellowknife, Canada; Salekhard, Russia, Rovaniemi, Finland, Tromsø, Norway, Nuuk, Greenland, Kiruna, Sweden and Fairbanks, the USA.
The Standing Committee of Parliamentarians of the Arctic Region, which is responsible for the work between conferences, started its activities in September 1994.
One of the main priorities of the Standing Committee was originally to support the establishment of the Arctic Council. The new organization, representing the eight Arctic states (Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Russia, Sweden and the USA) and the European Parliament was founded on 19 September 1996. Since then the Committee has worked actively to promote the work of the Council. The Committee participates in the meetings of the Arctic Council as an observer.