Norway signs cooperation agreement with Portugal on blue and green growth

Norway and Portugal have signed a new cooperation agreement under the EEA and Norway Grants, for a total of more than NOK 900 million. Of this amount, NOK 550 million (EUR 62 million) will be used to strengthen business, research and climate cooperation.

'Ocean-based businesses are an important driver of the economy in both Norway and Portugal. Our two countries already cooperate closely, but with this new agreement, we are now seeking to further strengthen our cooperation,' said Minister of EEA and EU Affairs Frank Bakke-Jensen.

The agreement was signed in Lisbon on 22 May by State Secretary Elsbeth Tronstad and Portugal's Minister of Planning and Infrastructure Pedro Marques. Christian Grotnes Halvorsen, MFA, Oslo
The agreement was signed in Lisbon on 22 May by State Secretary Elsbeth Tronstad and Portugal's Minister of Planning and Infrastructure Pedro Marques. Credit: Christian Grotnes Halvorsen, MFA, Oslo

Under the agreement, which was signed today in Lisbon, NOK 102.7 million has been allocated to programmes and funds in Portugal under the EEA and Norway Grants. A substantial part of this funding is earmarked for efforts to promote blue and green growth. Innovation Norway will play a key role in facilitating cooperation between Norwegian and Portuguese partners.

Support will be provided to six programmes and funds:

  • Blue growth – business development and research (EUR 38 million)
  • Green growth – climate and energy (EUR 24 million)
  • Gender equality (EUR 6 million)
  • Civil society (EUR 11 million)Culture (EUR 9 million)
  • Bilateral fund (EUR 2.05 million)

'It is not only Norwegian companies and research institutions that can enter into cooperation projects. The grant scheme also offers significant opportunities for local authorities, NGOs and the cultural sector. Anyone who would like to take part in creating a green, competitive and inclusive Europe is welcome to participate', Mr Bakke-Jensen said.

In addition to Innovation Norway, the following Norwegian agencies will be responsible for recruiting Norwegian project partners: the Research Council of Norway, the Directorate for Cultural Heritage, and the Norwegian Centre for International Cooperation in Higher Education.

Over the next few months, these Norwegian agencies will work with their Portuguese counterparts to develop the programmes. Open calls for project proposals will be announced at a later stage.

Facts about the EEA and Norway Grants

  • Under the EEA Agreement, Norway is part of the European internal market.
  • The EEA Agreement sets out the common goal of working together to reduce social and economic disparities in Europe and to strengthen cooperation between European countries. Norway contributes to this through the EEA and Norway Grants.
  • EUR 2.8 billion will be available under the grant scheme for the period 2014-2021, to be distributed among 15 beneficiary countries. Portugal will receive EUR 102.7 million of this total.
  • Norway provides some 98 % of this funding; the remainder is provided by Iceland and Liechtenstein.

See the fact sheet for an overview of the programmes that are to be implemented in Portugal.