Welcome to the participants of the NRBF VI in Moscow
18 October 2018

From Liv Monica Stubholt, President of the NRCC

On behalf of the Norwegian-Russian Chamber of Commerce, I am very pleased to invite and welcome all the participants to the 6th Norwegian-Russian Business Forum.

This year we introduce the topic which is Ocean industries – Innovations & new contexts”. The program will include the following three parallel sessions: maritime sector, oil & gas and logistics in the High North and aquaculture sector.

Norway depends heavily on so called “blue industry sectors” – ocean-based industries such as fisheries, aquaculture, shipping as well as tourism and petroleum industry. Sustainable development of these sectors has been a priority in policy development in Norway for years now. The environmental aspect is at the pillar of any sustainable development strategy, in parallel with the social and economic dimensions.

Last year the NRCC organised a large number of business arenas to support companies from Norway and Russia in identifying interesting business opportunities, particularly in the ocean related industry sectors, and we see clear and actionable results, especially in relation to the upgrade program for the Russian fishing industry.

Aquaculture is high on the Norwegian political agenda. The rhetorical question was “Is fish the new oil?” when both Prime Minister of Norway Erna Solberg and State Secretary of the Norwegian Ministry of Trade, Industry and Fisheries Roy Angelvik attended a seafood conference in April 2018. In NRCC’s view, Norway will continue to develop sustainable oil and gas in coexistence with the fisheries and aquaculture industries in the years ahead.

Norway`s largest single investor in the Russian market, the Norwegian Government Pension Fund Global, has maintained their positions in the Russian market in 2017. The investment portfolio had a market value of USD 5 023 708 229 by the end of last year, distributed with 55% in equities and 45% in bonds.

As a Chamber of Commerce, it is our natural instinct and our given purpose to promote bilateral economic cooperation and to work continuously for a free flow of trade and investments under any conditions within the confines of and respecting the regulatory regime in both countries.

The clear aim of the Forum is to move business dialogue forward and discuss options to enhance and diversify bilateral trade. We look forward to sharing our experiences and to cooperate in prosperity for both nations and our businesses when we meet in Moscow in October 2018.

From Sergey Katyrin, President of the CCI of Russia

On behalf of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation, I am pleased to welcome the participants of the Russian-Norwegian Business Forum VI in Moscow.

In 2018, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation and the Norwegian-Russian Chamber of Commerce (NRCC) changed the format of this traditional event: this Forum will be devoted to one topic – cooperation in the economy sectors related to the sea.

This is not accidental. For centuries our nations were connected by the sea, not only as the most convenient route between Russia and Norway, but also as a foundation for economic cooperation. Everything began with Pomor trade, where herring and cod were main trade goods. From that time to the present, the maritime theme has been dominant in the Russian-Norwegian economic relations: mutual trade in fish and seafood, joint management of the bioresources of the Barents Sea, cooperation in offshore exploration and production of hydrocarbons, supply of Norwegian marine equipment for the Russian fishing fleet and Norwegian technology for Russian fish processing enterprises, development and implementation of projects within industrial fish breeding in Russia, cooperation in transportation and logistics sector in the Far North.

Russia is increasing its economic activity in the Arctic. This includes also production of oil and gas, and upgrade of the infrastructure. Norwegian business is interested in taking part in the further development and use of the Northern Sea Route, in projects within the framework of the integrated development of the Murmansk transport hub, in creating a center for the construction of large-tonnage offshore structures, and in development of hydrocarbon deposits on the Yamal peninsula.

Norwegian companies have a keen interest in an ambitious modernization program of the Russian fishing fleet. It is gratifying that the chambers of commerce and industry of the North-West of Russia often act as partners in organizing business missions devoted to shipbuilding cooperation, including negotiations in the B2B format. Now the chambers of the Far East region have joined this work.

We see an intensified cooperation in the field of fish farming. In recent years, the NRCC, with the assistance of Russian CCI’s, has organized workshops on aquaculture in Moscow and St. Petersburg.

These topics will be discussed at today’s Forum.

Wherever geopolitical winds blow – and unfortunately, they are not the most favorable now – Russia and Norway remain good neighbors, destined by northern nature and severe Arctic waters for close cooperation. This is what the CCI of Russia and the NRCC take as a premise for their daily cooperation.

I sincerely wish all participants of the Forum successful work.