Historical archive

New reports map exports from Norwegian regions

"Export from Norwegian regions – why the large differences?" (Menon report 2/2012) reveals major differences between counties and regions in Norway as regards how export-orientation.

"Export from Norwegian regions – why the large differences?" (Menon report 2/2012) reveals major differences between counties and regions in Norway as regards how export-orientation.

The report roughly divides the country into two parts. One part that exports a lot, and one that exports relatively little. Areas with widely distributed settlement patterns emerge as the most export-intensive, with the highest exports, highest exports per capita and highest export per capita employed in business and industry.

«This overview shows how important the Norwegian coastal regions are for creation of value and employment in Norway. Exports in and around the large cities and the large export industries along the coast depend on each other. This is important knowledge in our work to strengthen value creation all over Norway,» says Minister of Local Government and Regional Development, Liv Signe Navarsete.

The findings of the report suggest that many major Norwegian export industries are likely to do well in the future, as long as they continue to emphasise knowledge, networks and specialisation.

The report was commissioned by the Ministry of Local Government and Regional Development. Menon has mapped the exports from all Norwegian regions. The work has broken new ground in several ways. This is the first time the export of services has been included in the statistics, and the figures are also based on where the enterprises/production is located, not the address of the main office.

Menon has prepared three different future scenarios. Such scenarios are uncertain by nature. The scenarios predict that oil and gas-related industries, such as the maritime sector and offshore supply industry, will probably do well in the coming years. The seafood industry also has a strong position, according to the report. A shortage of qualified personnel is and will remain a challenge in some regions.

The report shows that the export values, measured per capita, are highest in the four counties in western Norway and Vest-Agder County. If we consider total exports, the large urban regions score high. The capital stands out with a very high export of services.

Although regions that export a lot will feel the decline in important markets the most, regions with low exports are far from shielded from international developments. The competition in the domestic market is increasing, and these regions have a business and industry structure that leaves the companies with few alternatives. 
Menon has also studied why some regions export more than others. The main explanation is variations in business and industry structure.  Another finding is that export breeds export. Not surprisingly, the knowledge-intensive export industries, with high productivity and profitability, are strong, and strong clusters reinforce an already positive development. The location of natural resources still plays a substantial role but this role is diminishing as service exports grow. Service exports now account for 50 per cent of all Norwegian exports when excluding oil and gas.


The Ministry of Local Government and Regional Development’s media line: +47 22 24 25 00.