In 2018, Norway is accelerating its plan to scale up its railway and road infrastructure. “High quality infrastructure, efficient and safe transport solutions are prerequisites for good welfare services and for the nation’s competitiveness” says the Minister of Transport and Communication, Mr. Ketil Solvik Olsen.
On the 5th of April 2017, Mr. Solvik Olsen released Norway’s National Transport Plan for 2018–2029 - which is aimed towards a Norway with increased mobility, decreased transport costs and reduced emissions. In short: a plan to build a better and greener Norway, with 55 billion euros to be invested into road networks and 35 billion to be allocated to railway projects within a twelve-year period. This is a budget increase of over 50 % compared to what was presented by the previous government for 2014-2023.
What role French suppliers will be playing in this transformation?
France keeps receiving excellent ratings for its road, rail and air infrastructures by the European Commission. French road and railway companies are also well-known for their expertise, making them more than qualified to take part in Norwegian tenders.
Thales, for instance, will take part in the digitalisation of Norwegian railway and will provide the Traffic Management System for Bane NOR, the stately owned player in charge of all railway infrastructure operations.
Another French leader in infrastructure industry, Alstom, has recently won a 210.6 million of euros contract to supply onboard equipment. Alstom will deliver the ETCS equipment for 400 vehicles owned by 14 companies.
The governmental strategy for Norway’s rail and road infrastructure draws a lot of attention from French companies. In this context, Business France’s office in Norway organised a B2B event in Oslo last month ( 12-13 March), inviting 7 French leading companies in the sector (TSO, EIFFAGE, ALSTOM, ETF, ENGIE INEO, BOUYGUES TRAVAUX PUBLICS and CAN) to meet with the two main stakeholders in the rail and road sector: Bane NOR and Nye Veier. The event was an excellent occasion for French companies to show their expertise directly to the two Norwegian decisionmakers, as well as for the Norwegian players to learn in detail what France has to offer.
Pushing further the open and prosperous market of transport infrastructures, we look forward to seeing more sharing of expertise between France and Norwayin the coming years.