– This week’s round of negotiations in Oslo shows that both Norway and China want progress in the negotiations. It is not surprising that negotiations in certain core areas, such as goods, are demanding. But the government continues to prioritize free trade negotiations with China, says Minister of Industry Torbjørn Røe Isaksen (H).
China is Norway’s sixth largest trading partner and the most important in Asia. In 2017, we traded Chinese goods for around NOK 90 billion.
In the round of negotiations in Oslo this week, negotiations were conducted on trade in goods, trade in services and investments, rules of origin, trade simplification, intellectual property law, public procurement, competition, technical barriers to trade, veterinary issues, trade and environment, legal issues and trade measures.
– The round of negotiations was characterized by positive progress, and some of the negotiating topics are nearing completion, says Røe Isaksen.
However, he admits that the discussions on market access for trade in goods and services are demanding. Norway is working to get duty-free for industrial products, including seafood. At the same time, China is keen to gain improved access to the Norwegian agricultural market.
The negotiations in Oslo are the 13th round of negotiations for a free trade agreement between Norway and China. A new round of negotiations is planned in Beijing before Easter.