Zhejiang has a special relationship with Nordland county in the north of Norway as “sister regions”. The delegation therefore made Nordland its first stop in Norway and visited the regions of Vesterålen and Lofoten, along with several locally based companies. Mr Che Yun and Tomas Norvoll, president of Nordland Country Government, signed an agreement of cooperation aiming to tighten the ties between the two regions by promoting greater cooperation and exchanges in the fields of economy, science, education tourism and commerce.
The increasing export of Norwegian seafood to China, as well as the technology developed by local seafood companies, also meant that the delegation visited several fishery and aquaculture companies. The delegation also attended a seminar about smart cities held by the Mayor of Bodø, Ms Ida Pinnerød. Having both built their economies largely on technological innovation, the two sister regions are optimistic about a fruitful cooperative relationship in the future.
Following this visit, more Norwegian salmon and other seafood will find its way to Chinese restaurant menus and dinner tables. This will not only secure value creation in North Norway and beyond, but also contribute to promoting Norway and Norwegian companies as producers of high-quality products and innovative technological solutions.
In a broader perspective, the development and internationalisation of North Norway is an important element of the Norwegian Government’s Arctic strategy. The increasing interest from China in the Arctic, especially in the areas of research (environment, climate change), technology and business, is welcome.
The delegation ended its Norway visit in Oslo, meeting the Minister of Foreign Affairs Børge Brende and the CEO of Innovation Norway, Anita Krohn Traaseth, among others. Minister Brende pointed out that we can benefit from increased cooperation between Norway and Zhejiang in many fields, including business, tourism, research and education, innovation, and culture.