First Virtual Business Delegation to California

Organized by Innovation Norway, the Norwegian Government’s business enterprise agency, alongside the Norwegian Ministry of Trade and Fisheries, and the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs will conduct a virtual Royal Visit to California. The visit is led by HRH Crown Prince Haakon of Norway and the Norwegian visit will include high-level political representatives such as the Foreign Minister, Ine Marie Eriksen Søreide, the Minister of Trade, Iselin Nybø, and the Minister of Petroleum and Energy, Tina Bru.
California is the most populous U.S. state, and the world’s fifth largest economy. The state has a leading role globally in developing and investing in green technology. At the same time, the state faces huge challenges, such as drought and forest fires, linked to climate change. 
“California has paved the way for financing, developing and applying new technology. Through political strategy and actions, the Golden State have shown that they want to be a leader for implementing measures to reach the goals in the Paris Climate Agreement. This gives us a fantastic starting point for enhancing the cooperation between Norwegian companies and partners in California,” says Håkon Haugli, CEO of Innovation Norway.
Haugli continues, “The goal of this visit is to showcase Norwegian policy, know-how and technology in areas that we know are of great interest and to open doors for Norwegian companies that can contribute with their solutions and expertise. This is, moreover, a great opportunity for sharing best practice and we have a lot to learn from California as well.”
California and Norway have joint ambitions
California and Norway share ambitions for tomorrow’s green technology and want closer cooperation on several areas. Both have made ambitious efforts for zero-emission passenger vehicles, and California has set clear targets for the use of renewable energy.
That is the background for the business delegation, which will focus on the net-zero transition, with a primary emphasis on the areas of offshore wind, electrification, smart societies, green shipping, and sustainable finance.
“These are areas in which Norwegian companies have world-leading expertise and experience,” says Haugli, “and where Norway has proven to be the ideal test lab for scaling new sustainable technologies.”
Lt. Governor Eleni Kounalakis and the California Energy Commission and the Public Unities Commission, and the California Air Resource Board, and the Office for Planning and Research are among the participants from California. Norwegian companies participating include Equinor, Aker Offshore Wind, Nordea, and Nysnø as well as our cluster organizations like SAMS mobility cluster and Norwegian Energy Partners.
Travel restrictions do not end the interest in cooperation
In times of travel restrictions, virtual solutions will help maintain meeting places, conversations, and a feeling of personal presence.
“Businesses in Norway and California show a great interest in each other’s ideas and opportunities. That does not stop because of a pandemic, and we want to offer interested companies a whole new way of making contacts in a safe and efficient way,” says Haugli.
Interested parties can follow the whole visit digitally, and experience a mixed reality production never before used for a Royal delegation. They, along with media, should register beforehand. Information about the program, participants and registrations information is available on Norway Events.
Kristian Bye, Director
Innovation Norway in Palo Alto
phone: (650) 575-1000
Source: Innovation Norway