Norwegians are keen on British brands and products. They have high spending power and expect quality, well-packed and competitively priced products. The market is technologically and digitally advanced, and there is a growing interest in responsible consumption and healthy, sustainable products. Norwegians are early adopters of technology.
UK-Norway, Iceland, and Liechtenstein free trade agreement
The UK has signed a free trade agreement with Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein. Read our latest updates for more information on the status of this agreement and how it may benefit your business.
Proximity, ease of business
Norway is one of the UK’s closest neighbours. It can be reached in a 2-hour flight. English is widely spoken, and Norwegians are comfortable with UK culture.
Top five UK goods exported to Norway , in the four quarters to the end of Q3 2023
|Goods||Value (£ million )|
|General industrial machinery (intermediate)||217.0|
|Miscellaneous metal manufactures||196.6|
Top five UK services exported to Norway , in the four quarters to the end of Q1 2023
|Service||Value (£ billion )|
|Other Business Services||1.4|
|Telecommunications, computer and information services||0.8|
|Insurance and Pension||0.5|
ONS UK trade in services: service type by partner country, non-seasonally adjusted
Last updated: July 2023
Download the latest trade and investment factsheet for Norway.
Total import value (into the UK from Norway) and export value (from the UK into Norway) over time
|Year||Imports (£ billion )||Exports (£ billion )||Total trade (£ billion )|
ONS UK total trade: all countries, seasonally adjusted
Last updated: October 2023
Total trade is the sum of all exports and imports over the same time period.
Download the latest trade and investment factsheet for Norway.
Norway: at a glance
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Opportunities for exporters
There is a demand for UK-manufactured products and services across many sectors in Norway. This ranges from consumer products and environmental technologies, to e-vehicles and finance. There is also demand for medical and pharmaceutical products and physical and cyber security products.
Planned projects and developments
The first offshore wind licences are to be auctioned in 2022. UK developers are among the communicated consortia. Onshore the TSO is investing heavily in further grid development and upgrades. A hydrogen infrastructure network will deliver decarbonisation of the maritime sector. CCUS projects offer R&D opportunity.
No requirement for local content
Norwegian energy companies export globally, with the renewables energy sector also in high demand. Suppliers to Norwegian companies can expect their products and services to be re-exported to destinations other than Norway.
The energy sector is an earlier adopter of new technology. There is an openness to apply solutions and technologies for improved service and efficiency. Companies in Norway are actively seeking solutions to reduce emissions to reach national and Paris agreement targets and gain competitive advantage.
For infrastructure and construction sectors to deliver on national climate targets for emission reduction, there is a requirement for green solutions. Public procurement is actively seeking sustainable solutions for new buildings, roads and railways, as well as recycling materials to protect the built environment.
The national budget allocates NOK 84.6 billion to the transport sector in 2022 (Statsbudsjettet.no, 2022). This budget will give NOK 31.8 billion to the railways and NOK 40 billion to roads. The 19% increase from the previous year is due to investments into pilot projects for fossil-free construction sites, traffic safety and research into the sector.
By 2025, all new private cars and small vans shall be zero emission vehicles. City buses will be zero emission or on bio gas by 2025 (regjeringen.no, 2022). Additionally, the goal is for short haul flights to be fully electric by 2040 (avinor.no, 2020). There are opportunities in innovation, research and development for solutions, material and batteries. The Norwegian market can act as a springboard to many other markets.
Demand for UK expertise
There is a demand in Norway for UK products and services for preventative and protective security. The UK offer is considered well-established, attractive and enjoys a good reputation. There are opportunities for UK companies in civil technologies, cyber security and physical security.
Norway has a strong focus on building and sharing knowledge and competences in the security sector. Several initiatives have been taken in recent years to strengthen Norway’s ability to detect and withstand threats, leading to increased investment in security products and services, including many from the UK. This trend will continue.
Demand for new food categories
With an estimated 680,000 visits from Norway to the UK in 2019 (VisitBritain, 2020, pre-covid), familiarity with British food and drink continues to grow and give retailers more reason to stock British products. Opportunities for UK producers exist within health, free-from, natural, vegetarian, vegan and plant-based foods, innovative products and own-label products.
Norway is a not a member of the EU but is a member of the EEA, so most regulations regarding imports are similar to those in the EU. The main exception is agricultural products, where Norway has some tariffs on imported products. See our free trade agreement for further details.
Norway has a relatively small population but given the structure of the grocery retail market, a successful product can gain national coverage relatively quickly. The market is dominated by 3 retail groups which, apart from own-label products, buy from local importers/distributors.
Low emission aviation
Norway’s commitment to have low emission (electric) domestic flights by 2040 offers opportunity for collaboration and R&D between the UK’s world-leading aviation industry and Norway's own. Norway is creating a testbed market and is pursuing international cooperation in this area, while also introducing biofuels for long-haul flights.
Developing a digital public sector is a priority, to ensure a well-functioning welfare state. Digitalisation and the use of information and communication technology, including 5G, can make a positive contribution to economic growth and productivity. The country is tech savvy but is sourcing competences internationally.
Healthtech and medtech
The Norwegian health sector has the potential to become one of the most important growth industries for Norway. Having had to face high pressure in the health services during 2020-2021, reviewing and investing in smarter, improved healthcare is at the forefront of the government’s agenda.