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Energy and marine resources

The growing world population will need more and more food and energy. Sustainable use of marine resources will help to meet this demand.

Photo: Bjørn Luell/Statkraft

Norway is a maritime nation and has built up wide-ranging know-how on energy and marine resources. Norwegian experts have developed technology for sustainable development of natural resources. Our areas of expertise include renewable hydropower, fish and seafood, offshore oil and gas production, and fisheries and energy aid to developing countries. 

Knowledge about the oceans and the resources they provide will continue to be vital for future generations. We must establish sound regimes for resource use so that the blue economy can grow sustainably. This means working towards high environmental standards that are enforced both nationally and internationally.

In 2017, the Government presented a new ocean strategy. It takes as a starting point Norway’s history as a maritime nation, and focuses on the sustainable use and development of the oceans.


  • ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all
  • find solutions for meeting the world’s energy needs and share our knowledge and expertise
  • ensure well-functioning international energy markets, global energy supplies and European energy security
  • ensure effective implementation of the law of the sea and environmental legislation at both national and international level
  • ensure that value creation in the blue economy is based on sustainable use of marine resources 

Oil and gas 40 % of exports

The total export value of crude oil and natural gas in 2015 was around NOK 450 billion. This is approximately 40 % of the total value of Norway’s exports.


Oil for Development

Norway has long experience of managing petroleum resources in a way that promotes sustainable economic growth and Norwegian welfare. We are now sharing this experience with 12 other countries through the Oil for Development programme.


Major hydropower producer

Norway is the world’s sixth largest hydropower producer, and the largest in Europe.


  • highlighting the importance of the oceans as a source of food and energy
  • using our energy resources, seas and marine resources sustainably
  • promoting the development of sustainable solutions for resource use
  • promoting the development of expertise on sustainable and integrated marine management
  • playing a leading role in the fight against marine litter and microplastics in the oceans 

Undiscovered resources

Huge areas of the oceans are still largely unexplored, and are likely to provide the world with minerals and other as yet undiscovered resources.


Plastic waste

Researchers are concerned about the increasing amounts of plastic waste in the seas, and the consequences this will have for marine life.


36 million seafood meals a day

In 2015, Norway exported an average of 36 million seafood meals every day.

Oil for Development - in Ghana and globally

Since Ghana found commercially viable oil and gas deposits in 2007, the two countries have cooperated to avoid the pitfalls and develop the benefits of Ghana’s petroleum related economic activity. Norway and Ghana shares a vision of environmentally and financially sound exploitation of our natural resources, including oil and gas. The main tool for our cooperation is the Oil for Development programme.

Under the Oil for Development programme Norway shares relevant experiences from 50 year of oil and gas exploration and production, with Ghana. Norwegian government institutions and experts offer strategic, technical and legal support to Ghana’s petroleum related ministries and institutions. The aim is to contribute to building a strong Ghanaian capacity for resource management, environmental protection and revenue management, including the legal and regulatory frameworks. Norway also shares relevant Norwegian experiences from civil society dialogue and mechanisms for coexistence between the petroleum sector, fisheries and local communities.

Around ten Norwegian public institutions take part in the programme. These are experts on petroleum exploration, tax, environment,  statistics, data management, legal frameworks, revenue management and other relevant issues. They work according to an activity plan which is developed according to the priorities of Ghana and and the corresponding capacities of Norway.  Norwegian Embassy in Accra is programme manager.

Among the important achievement is the key support to the development of the Petroleum Exploration and Production Bill, support to the industry regulator (the Petroleum Commission), legal frameworks for revenue management, as well as to Ghana's environmental impact assessments for offshore and onshore petroleum resource activities. The new programme component within revenue management will be fully implemented as of 2017.

The Oil for Development programme exists in 12 countries in Africa, the Middle East and Asia. In Ghana, OFD is the backbone of the bilateral development cooperation . The programme is financed by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and implemented by NORAD. The support from relevant Norwegian ministries and institutions is crucial.