Press Release
December 6, 2023

Senate adopts resolution recognizing RP-Norway cooperation

The Senate on Wednesday, December 6, 2023 adopted a resolution recognizing the enduring amity and cooperation between the the Philippines and the Kingdom of Norway, and commemorating the 75th anniversary of their diplomatic relations.

Senate Resolution No. 852, filed by Sen. Win Gatchalian, was unanimously adopted.

The resolution took note the long history of cooperation between the two countries "which has expanded beyond the maritime sector and into the energy sector, extractive industries like oil and gas, aquaculture, IT services, telecommunications, academic exchanges, social security, labor, migration, and peace and reconciliation efforts.

The Philippines and Norway established formal diplomatic relations on March 2,1948, with the Embassy of the Kingdom of Norway being established in Manila in 1967 and the Philippine Embassy in Norway being established in Oslo in 2007.

The resolution stated that for over 100 years the two countries established maritime cooperation, part of which is the establishment of the Norwegian Shipowners' Association (NSA) Cadet program, with the objective of developing Filipino maritime professionals through scholarship grants.

"The Norwegian Training Center (NTC) in Manila has produced almost 6,000 cadets and the NSA in Oslo has provided scholarships to Filipinos and employed NTC graduates in Norwegian ships," the resolution stated.

As of October 2022, there are already over 25,000 Filipino seafarers working aboard Norwegian ships or in shipyards, accounting for a third of all seafarers on Norwegian-controlled vessels.

Currently, the Philippines-Norway Business Council (PNBC) has around 50 member-companies and institutions, with the Embassy of the Kingdom of Norway being a founding member and permanent observer in the PNBC board.

Over the years, there has been a growing interest among Norwegian companies in investing in industrial enterprises and in the renewable energy sector in the Philippines. The Norwegian Government Pension Fund-Global also holds shares in several Philippine companies.

As of January 2023, there are almost 28,000 Filipinos living in Norway and part of its labor workforce. Similarly, a substantial number of Norwegians are living in the Philippines and are engaged in business or doing charitable work, the resolution stated.

Norway continues to support the peace process in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) and sits as the Vice-Chair of the Independent Decommissioning Body in charge of post-conflict decommissioning efforts of Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) combatants.

Norway is also the third-party facilitator of peace negotiations between the Philippines and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) and has been part of the International Monitoring Team maintaining the ceasefire between the Philippine government and the MILF in Mindanao.

Norway, it can be noted, was instrumental in the recent efforts to resume the peace talks between the administration of President Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. and the NDFP, the political arm of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP).

The diplomatic relations between the Philippines and Norway have resulted in several important agreements, to help contribute in economic growth of both countries.

"Whereas, the continuing mutual cooperation and friendship between the Philippines and Norway have contributed to the promotion of diplomatic relations and growth, especially in the maritime sector, as well as in peace and reconciliation efforts," the resolution further stated.

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