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Oslo, Beijing to enhance trade, climate cooperation

By MO JINGXI | China Daily | Updated: 2021-02-22 07:29

Norwegian envoy seeks opportunities from China's commitment to further opening-up

China's 14th Five-Year Plan (2021-2025) will shape the country's future social and economic development and Norway looks forward to the opportunities it brings for boosting bilateral cooperation in a series of areas including trade, climate and environment, said the country's top envoy in Beijing.

Norwegian Ambassador to China Signe Brudeset

"We look forward to studying the new five-year plan when it is approved and published," Norwegian Ambassador to China Signe Brudeset said in a written interview with China Daily.

As China reaffirms its commitment to further opening-up in the new five-year plan, Brudeset said that Norway sees opportunities in building on the important trade relations that the two countries already have, for example in the seafood and shipping industries, but also to develop new business areas in the Chinese market.

"Norway and China are currently negotiating a free-trade agreement between our countries. More open, predictable trade on equal footing will benefit businesses in both countries," she said.

Brudeset also said that Norway expects China's climate and environmental goals will be achieved through the implementation of the new plan.

"We have noted with great interest the ambitious goals on climate and the environment that have been announced by President Xi Jinping," she said.

Speaking at the general debate of the 75th session of the United Nations General Assembly via video in September last year, President Xi announced that China aims to have its carbon emissions peak before 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality before 2060.

In December, at the virtual Climate Ambition Summit, Xi unveiled China's tougher targets to reduce carbon dioxide emissions and increase the share of non-fossil fuels and forest stock in the next decade.

"Norway and China have for a long time had very solid cooperation on climate and environment," Brudeset said, adding that the two countries expanded this cooperation by the end of 2019, with new and innovative initiatives for cleaner oceans, better air quality and reduced emissions of greenhouse gases.

"Both Norway and China have strong expertise in these fields, and we are encouraged to see how experts on environment from our two countries have continued to work together, also during the challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic," she said.

The ambassador said that oceans, sports and outdoor activities are also areas where she sees potential for further cooperation while Norway-China cooperation progresses in many fields.

With extensive ocean-based cooperation, research and trade, Brudeset said she sees great potential for further cooperation between the two important ocean nations, with a goal to ensure that Norway and China can benefit from a profitable and sustainable ocean economy.

Outdoor activities

According to Brudeset, sports and outdoor activities are an important part of Norwegian culture and Norwegian people's daily life.

"Being a strong winter sports nation, the Winter Olympics is a very important event for us. With this experience, Norway is cooperating with China on sharing best practices to contribute to the success of the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games," she said.

In January, at a celebration for the one-year countdown to the Beijing 2022 Games, Ole Einar Bjorndalen, the Norwegian head coach of China's biathlon national team, said in a video that the team is doing well after about eight months of training in China.

"One year to go for the Olympics, we are in good shape, and we are training hard every day," the eight-time Olympic gold medalist said in the video.

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