January 5, 2024

Norwegian business meets to discuss support for Ukraine's recovery

Today, Innovation Norway, in collaboration with NUCC and NHO (Confederation of Norwegian Enterprise), hosted an important meeting for Norwegian companies. The primary objective was to establish a platform for dialogue between businesses and Norwegian governmental and public institutions, where participants could explore how Norwegian businesses could actively contribute to Ukraine’s reconstruction.

The context behind this meeting originates from the Norwegian Parliament’s approval of the Nansen Program, which allocated 75 billion NOK over five years to aid Ukraine starting in 2023. So far this support has focused on military and humanitarian aid, both undeniably crucial. However, it has become essential to address fostering business cooperation and providing technology and innovations, both vital for Ukraine’s recovery.

Håkon Haugli, the administrative director at Innovation Norway, welcomed the participants, consisting of NUCC members and members of the NHO Ukraine network. Chargé d’Affaires ad interim of Ukraine to Norway, Ihor Holovchenko, provided valuable context, emphasizing Ukraine’s position as an economic frontline where the success of its recovery could influence other states. He highlighted the remarkable resilience of Ukraine’s economy, providing examples of its continued functionality and urged both Norwegian public and private sectors to take an active role in the rebuilding process.

Idar Kreutzer, director at NHO (Confederation of Norwegian Enterprise), stressed the importance of an all-round approach to support Ukraine’s recovery, consisting of three pillars: military support, humanitarian aid, and empowering the private sector through financial instruments. This approach involves recognizing the significance of Norwegian military engagement in addressing unjustified aggression towards Ukraine, as well as emphasizing Norway’s commitment to providing essential assistance to address immediate humanitarian needs. However, the cycle of support reaches completion when comprehensive strategies are developed and essential financial instruments are provided. The private sector plays a vital role in both the initial support phases and the further mobilization of resources for investment and job creation, as well as the essential task of rebuilding and modernizing Ukraine.

Following the brief remarks, companies had the opportunity to share their experiences in either operating in Ukraine or encountering challenges while planning to participate in Ukraine’s recovery. The meeting provided a valuable platform to exchange experiences, address obstacles, and generate ideas for moving forward. It marked a significant step toward joining the collective strength and expertise of Norwegian businesses to contribute to Ukraine’s recovery and future development.

We would like to thank Innovation Norway for hosting us and organizing the meeting, NHO for their constant support and cooperation, as well as all the companies who joined the meeting, for their time and valuable input!

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