So far this year, seafood exports from Norway to South Korea have increased by 40 percent compared to 2014. Now the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs encourage companies in both countries to cooperate more, also in Arctic affairs.
- South Korea is a key market for Norway, and will undoubtedly become even more important in the future.
This was stated by State Secretary Morten Høglund in the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs when he spoke to the Ambassador of the Republic of South Korea to Norway, earlier this week.
At a seminar in Oslo hosted by NHO, the Confederation of Norwegian Enterprise, there were also several representatives from Norwegian companies with experience from South Korea.
South Korea is Norway's seventh most important trade partner, and second most important in Asia.
The cooperation today covers a wide range of areas, including trade, maritime affairs, climate and energy, Arctic affairs and global issues.
Exports from South Korea to Norway have almost tripled since 2005.
- The success of the free trade agreement between EFTA and South Korea shows that we are complementary partners. I hope that we will continue to create even further momentum together, the State Secretary stated in his speech.
At the moment there are more than 40 Norwegian companies operating in South Korea, and the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs believes that there is room for many more.
Like South Korea, Norway has a comprehensive maritime industry cluster.
- Many leading Norwegian maritime companies are already active in South Korea. We look forward to further strengthening the bilateral relationship between Korea and Norway related to our Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on shipbuilding and the development of green ships and our MOU on maritime transport, Høglund says.
High hopes for aqua farming
The State Secretary also highlighted that South Koreas is an increasingly important market for the Norwegian seafood industry. So far this year, seafood exports from Norway to South Korea have increased by 40 percent compared to 2014.
- Aqua farming may well become the next major industry for cooperation between Norway and South Korea. The whole value chain of fisheries and aqua farming presents opportunities to put Norwegian expertise to good use, Høglund says.
Norway and South Korea have close ties in the fields of shipping and shipbuilding.
- With the development of the Arctic as a transport route and energy source, increased cooperation between our countries in the Arctic is welcome. We appreciate South Korea´s engagement and role as an active observer to the Arctic Council and your contributions to Arctic research, Høglund says.
- Welcome Korean investments
The State Secretary also talked about the Barents Sea in Norway’s High North:
- It has vast and mostly unexploited natural gas reserves. I see new opportunities for trade and cooperation with South Korea on LNG (liquefied natural gas), in light of the significant potential of the Northern Sea Route.
- DANA, a South Korean oil company, is currently operating on the Norwegian continental shelf. I hope their example can be an inspiration for other South Korean companies to engage in the Norwegian oil and gas sector, as well as in other sectors. Indeed, we welcome Korean investments, the State Secretary said, before adding that he believes that South Korea undoubtedly will become even more important in the future.
The Norwegian State Secretary will be visiting South Korea on 27 and 28 October.