India-Norway: Shared ambitions for transitioning to a green economy

Arne Jan Flolo, Consul General of Norway in Mumbai

Indian and Norwegian energy companies and R&D institutions have different comparative advantages and are increasingly engaging in mutually beneficial partnerships. Norway can contribute with technology and India has the scale. ‘We already have around 120 Norwegian companies in India. Several of them have been here for decades and are already contributing to the development of a sustainable energy system in India together with Indian partners’, shares Arne Jan Flolo, Consul General of Norway in Mumbai, in an exclusive interview with Krishna Mishra of Elets News Network (ENN). Edited excerpts:

Give us an overview of the Norwegian energy sector. What is the share of renewable energy and where do you intend to go?

In Norway, we have a very unique combination when it comes to energy resources. We have a domestic energy system based almost entirely on flexible hydropower (more specifically 92 per cent hydro, 6 per cent wind and 2 per cent fossil fuels). For the future, we will go in the direction of wind power, in particular off shore power. We are also seeing more solar power coming, both at industries and at people’s homes.

Norway has made remarkable strides in clean energy technologies. What have been the key enablers?

Implementation of policies and climate & environmental targets are key enablers. By supporting green initiatives with funding, we also stimulate and incentivise the private sector. This also includes the important role that the state has to stimulate the demand side for new technologies, such as through public tenders.

As Government, we have an important role in facilitating innovation and technology development. Important platforms for this are the National Business Clusters, or Centres of Expertise (CoE). Within these clusters, thousands of companies cooperate closely with each other, with academics and with the government, combining their knowledge to bring about new innovations and apply emerging technologies and new business models.

This approach has helped us to create strong hubs of knowledge within a series of sectors, including renewable energy, hydrogen, batteries and green shipping.

How do you see the role of technology for creating a sustainable and energy secure world?

Very important. And many relevant technologies have already been implemented in countries like Norway.

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How can Norway help India in meeting its burgeoning energy requirements? What are the key elements of India-Norway energy partnership?

First, we share ambitions for the transition to a green economy, to reduce carbon footprint and meet a growing energy demand.

Indian and Norwegian energy companies and R&D institutions have different comparative advantages and are increasingly engaging in mutually beneficial partnerships. We already have around 120 Norwegian companies established with business in India. Several of them have been here for decades and are already contributing to the development of a sustainable energy system in India together with Indian partners.

Introduction of Norwegian green technologies and innovative business models are the key elements. We see more Norwegian technology companies entering the Indian market due to the fact that India is among the best suited countries to produce renewable energy and green hydrogen from renewables. Norway can contribute with technology and India has scale.