- The Russian import ban on seafood is the main cause of the significant decrease in Norwegian trade with Russia since 2014, Norwegian Fisheries Minister Per Sandberg says to High North News.
In a recent interview with High North News, Chairman of the Board of the Norwegian-Russian Chamber of Commerce said that:
“The Norwegian export to Russia should be 15 billion kroner, not 2 billions, as it is now. Norway suffers from the restrictive trade regime – to a larger extent than many other OECD countries.”
Agrees with Stubholt
Stubholt also emphasized that Norwegian seafood export is subject to Russian countermeasures.
Fisheries Minister Per Sandberg agrees.
- Seafood has traditionally constituted about 75 percent of all exports from Norway to Russia. Imports from Russia has remained more or less stable through the period.
The seafood industry managed, to a large extent, to find alternative markets following the ban on imports, and this applied in particular for salmon, where the international market price has been high through the past year.
Stubholt also emphasized the oil and gas sector as a significant cause of reduced trade between Norway and Russia in the past few years.
“…not least the fact that oil and gas operations in Arctic waters are a particular target of the measures. Without measures against oil and gas in 2014 this would have been an important arena for bilateral trade”.
Also affected by oil price
- The economic cooperation between Norway and Russia is not limited only by restrictive measures and a ban on import, the Fisheries Minister stresses. - It is also affected by lower price on oil and a subsequent new market situation. An insecure economic and political situation in Russia has also played a role in this.
Welcome to new projects
Sandberg says supporting financial relations between Norway and Russia is still desirable.
- We have, from the Norwegian side, been clear all along that financial business not covered by the restrictive measures may continue.
We therefore welcome cooperation projects in e.g. shipbuilding and aquaculture, and are well informed about the Norwegian-Russian Chamber of Commerce’s strong contribution to establishing solid meeting places between Norwegian and Russian actors in these areas.
Fairly Optimistic Minister
Norway has a good reputation in Russia as far as fish-farming technology goes, and we are aware of Norwegian fish-farming equipment being sold to the Russian market. This is a kind of cooperation that happens at the initiative and on the conditions of the companies themselves.
I am fairly optimistic regarding future trade with Russia. We have many good cooperation relationships and history shows that we find good solutions, Norwegian Fisheries Minister Per Sandberg says in closing.
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