The import of Russian goods into Norway increased by almost 60 percent between 2020 and 2021, figures from Statistics Norway have found.
Additionally, since 2017 imports have almost doubled from 12.7 billion kroner of goods to 21.8 billion kroner worth of goods last year.
Among the goods Norway imports from Russia are food, metals, fuels and chemical products. Other significant imports from across the border are aluminium and tyres. Aluminium and tyres accounted for more than 6 billion kroner worth of imports last year.
Norway has a trade deficit with Russia, meaning it imports more goods than it exports. Last year, the country exported 3.7 billion kroner worth of goods to Russia. This meant that it imported around six times more goods than it exported.
Animal feed was Norway’s most significant Russian export. Other exported goods include machinery, fish and transportation.
Prior to 2014, when an import ban on Norwegian fish was introduced as a reaction to sanctions imposed on Russia following the annexation of Crimea, fish was Norway’s most significant export to Russia.
In 2013, the country exported 6.5 billion kroner of fish to Russia.
On March 15th, the EU introduced a new round of sanctions against Russia designed to impact the steel industry. Russia has responded with a list of 200 different products that it will no longer export.
This is likely to have a knock-on in Norway, which imported 33,000 tonnes of steel from Russia last year.
Sindre Finnes from the Federation of Norwegian Industries has said that the impact of the sanctions can be felt in Norway already.
“Due to sanctions against Russia, we are missing many metals,” he told public broadcaster NRK.
Helge Runer, managing director of steel wholesaler Norsk Stål, said that they had received an unprecedented amount of inquiries from foreign firms in need of steel.
“We have received so many calls from foreign companies on a desperate hunt for steel. We have never experienced anything like it before,” Runer told finance and business publication Dagens Næringsliv.