Meet the new Ambassador to Croatia

Arne Sannes Bjørnstad brings wealth of experience to his new position.

A lawyer in diplomatic service

Arne joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1990 after graduating from the Faculty of Law Oslo as desk officer (legal/maritime affairs).

After postings to Ankara (1994- 97), Rabat (1997) and Paris (1998-2001), he was Coordinator for Norway's Foreign Policy and Justice/Home Affairs Cooperation with the European Union from the autumn of 2001 to January 2003, when called to the Office of the Prime Minister as Senior Adviser/Secretary to the Cabinet Secmity Committee.

September 2006 he was appointed Minister Counsellor for European and Economic Affairs at the Norwegian embassy in London, promoted to Deputy Head of Mission in 2008.

Returning from London in August 2011, he was attached to the Foreign Service Control Unit 2011, becoming Inspector General in March 2013.

Ambassador to the Serbia, Montenegro and North Macedonia 2015-2019, he became Norway's Special Representative for the Western Balkans August 2019.

Representing the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the COVID-19 Crisis Management Team of the Ministry of Heath and Care Services in 2020, he has since January 2021 been Head of "Team Europe Legal Secretariat" assisting the European Commission and EU/EFTA member states with legal issues related to vaccine resale and donations; he is in this capacity member of the EC Vaccines Steering Board.


Law Degree (Cand. Jur.) in 1990 from the University of Oslo. Studies in

  • Political Science and Law at the University of Oslo,
  • Public Administration at the Ecole Nationale d'Administration (France)
  • French language and literature at the the Institut Catholique de Paris (France)


Norwegian, English and French, all fluent