Norway has currently prohibited export of munitions to Israel, but the change of government may change the rules for the Norwegian arms exports to the country, writes Finansavisen.
– Basically I do not see the big fundamental differences between exporting to Israel and the United States. This will probably be on the agenda for the next few months, says Jørund Rytman, representative of FRP in the new industry committee and the head of Israel’s friends in Parliament.
Weapon industry in Norway has recently gained an importance in the export. The country exported weapons for around 3.9 billion NOK last year, an increase of 8 percent from the previous year.
Based on customs declarations, Norwegian exports of military equipment amounted to NOK 2.6 billion in 2011. This was just NOK 4 million lower than 2010 values.
Increased export of ammunition, decrease for military weapons
The relative spread between commodity groups did however change somewhat. Export values for the group ammunition and parts doubled to a total of NOK 403 million compared to the previous year, while military weapons and parts declined by a little over 7 per cent. The latter was still the largest of all commodity groups, with values amounting to NOK 1.4 billion in 2011. Export values for the second largest group of bombs, grenades, torpedoes, mines, rockets and similar military equipment including spare parts amounted to NOK 845 million for the same year.
According to figures published in the Comtrade database (the UN database for external trade), Norway was the seventh largest exporter of arms and ammunitions (SITC Rev. 3. group 891) in 2006. Norway’s export accounted for 3.5 per cent of the world’s total export of this commodity group. In comparison, the US, the world’s largest exporter of weapons, accounted for 46 per cent of the total export in 2006 with an export value of approximately USD 3.8 billion or NOK 24 billion. In Europe, only Italy, France and Germany had higher exports of weapons than Norway.