Search This Blog


White Press Office Feed

Tuesday, January 22, 2013


Map:  Norway.  Credit:  CIA World Factbook.

The United States established diplomatic relations with Norway in 1905, following Norway's separation from its union with Sweden. The United States and Norway enjoy a long tradition of friendly relations based on democratic values and mutual respect. The bilateral Global Issues Dialogue is a forum through which the two countries coordinate and expand cooperation on issues of mutual interest in the promotion of human rights, civilian security, and democracy. The United States and Norway share a commitment to promoting universal human rights and economic development, respect for the United Nations, and peaceful resolution of disputes around the globe. The two work closely together as North Atlantic Treaty Organization allies. There is a strong shared interest in addressing the problems posed by climate change, particularly with respect to the Arctic and in building cooperation in the region through the Arctic Council. The United States and Norway benefit from cultural exchanges, both officially and privately.

U.S. Assistance to Norway
The United States provides no development assistance to Norway.

Bilateral Economic Relations
The United States is one of Norway's principal trading partners. The growth of Norway's petroleum sector has contributed significantly to its economic vitality. Many U.S. companies participate actively in the petroleum sector. U.S. exports to Norway include aircraft, machinery, optic and medical instruments, and inorganic chemicals. U.S. imports from Norway include mineral fuel and oil, machinery, nickel and nickel products, and Atlantic salmon. Reported U.S. direct investment in Norway is led by the mining and manufacturing sectors. Software and IT services, coal, oil and natural gas, and metals, account for the top three sectors in Norway's reported direct investment in the United States.

Norway's Membership in International Organizations
Norway and the United States belong to a number of the same international organizations, including the United Nations, Arctic Council, North Atlantic Treaty Organization, Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council, Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, International Monetary Fund, World Bank, and World Trade Organization. Norway also is an observer to the Organization of American States.

Norway Locator Map.  Credit:  CIA World Factbook. 


Two centuries of Viking raids into Europe tapered off following the adoption of Christianity by King Olav TRYGGVASON in 994. Conversion of the Norwegian kingdom occurred over the next several decades. In 1397, Norway was absorbed into a union with Denmark that lasted more than four centuries. In 1814, Norwegians resisted the cession of their country to Sweden and adopted a new constitution. Sweden then invaded Norway but agreed to let Norway keep its constitution in return for accepting the union under a Swedish king. Rising nationalism throughout the 19th century led to a 1905 referendum granting Norway independence. Although Norway remained neutral in World War I, it suffered heavy losses to its shipping. Norway proclaimed its neutrality at the outset of World War II, but was nonetheless occupied for five years by Nazi Germany (1940-45). In 1949, neutrality was abandoned and Norway became a member of NATO. Discovery of oil and gas in adjacent waters in the late 1960s boosted Norway's economic fortunes. In referenda held in 1972 and 1994, Norway rejected joining the EU. Key domestic issues include immigration and integration of ethnic minorities, maintaining the country's extensive social safety net with an aging population, and preserving economic competitiveness.