European cooperation

Cross-border cooperation is crucial to ensure European security, freedom and economic strength. We need common European solutions to international challenges.

Norwegian security and welfare depend on European cooperation. Norway is involved in European cooperation through the European Economic Area (EEA) Agreement, the Schengen Agreement and Norway’s other agreements with the EU, and we cooperate closely on foreign and security policy issues.

Most of Norway’s close allies and like-minded partners are European countries. We have a shared set of values. Together with other European countries, Norway takes responsibility for helping to resolve common challenges in and around our continent, for example by facilitating growth and innovation, dealing with migration, addressing climate change and fighting terrorism.

Norway pursues an effective European policy based on political engagement, cooperation, knowledge and good use of channels for participating in EU institutions and communicating our views to member states. 

The Government’s European policy is designed to promote the realisation of our vision for Europe:

  • a secure Europe with focus on security and defence, justice and home affairs, and inclusive cooperation
  • a free Europe with respect for individual rights and freedoms, the rule of law and strong civil societies, and international law
  • an economically strong Europe with open, rules-based trade, a well-regulated labour market and a forward-looking business sector
  • a Europe that takes joint responsibility for common challenges, not least in areas such as climate change and energy, natural resource management, and migration

European internal market

Norway is part of the European internal market, which is home to about half a billion people.


Norway is the second largest gas provider to the EU

Around 90 % of Norway’s oil and gas is sold to the EU market. Norway is the second largest gas provider to the EU. Nearly all Norwegian gas to Europe is delivered by pipeline.


Norwegian exports

Nearly 80 % of Norwegian exports go to the EU.


  • providing input to the EU in connection with the development of policy and legislation in areas that are important for Norway
  • coordinating our positions on, and responses to, foreign and security policy issues with the EU and EU member states, where our interests coincide
  • ensuring that new common rules for the EEA and the Schengen Area become applicable in Norway as soon as possible after they are introduced in the EU
    • contributing to the reduction of economic and social disparities in Europe through the EEA and Norway Grants
  • further developing bilateral cooperation with other European countries

Horizon 2020

Researchers and companies from Norway and other European countries are engaged in cooperation under Horizon 2020, the world’s largest research and innovation programme.


Border operations in the Mediterranean

In 2016, more than 30 000 people were rescued at sea by Norwegian ships taking part in the EU’s border control operations in the Mediterranean.


EU Assistance

Norway provides more than NOK 3.3 billion a year to the 15 least prosperous EU member states.