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King Harald V of Norway and President Pahor on shared values and firm friendship between the two nations and countries

Oslo, 7. 11. 2019 | press release

At the invitation of King Harald V of Norway, the President of the Republic of Slovenia, Borut Pahor, is on a two-day state visit to Norway.

As part of this high-level visit, President Pahor also met the Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Norway, Erna Solberg. President Pahor and Prime Minister Solberg had a long discussion in which they confirmed that the bilateral relations were excellent. Mr Pahor and Ms Solberg stressed that the two countries hold similar views about many international issues and strive for effective multilateralism, the rule of law, and human rights.

They touched on the economic cooperation between Slovenia and Norway, agreeing that there were still many possibilities for enhancing cooperation in this area. In 2018, the volume of trade totalled EUR 118 million, which ranks Norway 41st among Slovenian foreign trade partners. There are business opportunities for cooperation, in particular, in the areas of circular economy, environmental technologies, artificial intelligence, robotics, information and communication technologies, tourism and other areas. In this regard, President Pahor and Prime Minister Solberg highlighted the importance of the development of green technologies for achieving sustainable development goals and exchanged views on energy efficiency in the future. President Pahor expressed his satisfaction that the programme of his state visit to Norway featured many economic elements, which showed that there was a mutual interest in deepening cooperation in this area and would contribute to the creation of new business ties.

President Pahor and Prime Minister Solberg devoted part of their talks to topical European issues. They exchanged views on security and the future of the EU, agreeing that the EU needs to be strengthened in order to be able to ensure security that will offer the protection of our values and our European and national identities. Prime Minister Solberg confirmed that Norway remained a close and reliable partner to the EU and that it would cooperate closely with the EU in the field of common foreign and security policy. President Pahor and Prime Minister Solberg exchanged views on the situation in Europe's neighbourhood. In their talks, they also exchanged views on the Western Balkans and assessed the situation in the region. They advocated the region's integration in the EU and – for those who wish so – NATO. They also discussed opportunities for cooperation between the two countries in the areas of digitalisation and artificial intelligence, in particular, within the International Research Centre for Artificial Intelligence under the auspices of UNESCO, which is being established at the Jožef Stefan Institute.

King Harald V of Norway and President Pahor on shared values and firm friendship between the two nations and countries
Photo: Nebojša Tejić/STA

Late in the afternoon the previous day, President Pahor, accompanied by the royal couple, attended the opening of an exhibition of contemporary Slovenian industrial design entitled "We’re Open!", which is on display at Kunsthall Oslo. President Pahor and King Harald V of Norway opened the exhibition, which was arranged in cooperation with the Centre for Creativity, which operates within the Slovenian Museum for Architecture and Design (MAO). The purpose of the exhibition is to present Slovenian companies and Slovenian designers and their newest products made from exclusively Slovenian components in the Norwegian market. The exhibition will be on display to a wider audience for three weeks, featuring: Asobi / Tokio, Domen Gregorič / AKLIH, Studio Primož Jeza / Donar, Ivana Blaž and Nina Mršnik / Kobeiagi Kilims, Janez Mesarič, Mashoni Design Studio / Intra Lighting, Ribrand / Ribnica Handicraft Centre, Jana Mršnik / BelaBela, Raketa / Pikka, Andraž Šapec / Donar, SADAR+VUGA, Tilen Sepič, Matej Štefanac, David Tavčar, Maechtig Vrhunc Architects, Ines Kavčič, Atelje Mali.

The evening closed with a gala dinner in the Royal Palace hosted by King Harald V of Norway and Queen Sonja on the occasion of the state visit by the President of the Republic of Slovenia.

President Pahor and the royal couple will attend a Slovenian-Norwegian business and science meeting today on the topics of artificial intelligence, the green transition to a circular economy and sustainable solutions, which will take place at SINTEF, one of Europe's largest independent research organisations. The event will be attended by a large number of Slovenian and Norwegian representatives of the business sector and educational institutions. As part of the event, President Pahor and the royal couple will be present at the signing of a memorandum of cooperation between the SINTEF Institute and the Jožef Stefan Institute by directors of the two institutions.

President Pahor and the Norwegian royal couple will then attend the opening of the exhibition "Slovenian Alpine Architecture" at the Holmenkollen Ski Museum.

This will be followed by an official lunch, hosted by the Minister of Digitalisation, Nikolai Astrup, on behalf of the Government of the Kingdom of Norway, and attended by President Pahor, the royal couple, and the Crown Prince.

As part of the state visit, a seminar on the promotion of beekeeping and the role of pollinators in sustainable food processing will be held at the BI Norwegian Business School. On this occasion, President Pahor will present the King of Norway with a Slovenian apiary with painted beehive panels.

In the evening President Pahor will host a Slovenian evening at Gamle Logen. The event has been designed in cooperation with the Slovenian Tourist Board and will be aimed at the general and tourist promotion of Slovenia. The event will also be attended by King Harald V, Queen Sonja and Crown Prince Haakon Magnus.


The toasts by the President of the Republic of Slovenia, Borut Pahor and King Harald at gala diner are below. The spoken word applies.

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King Harald V of Norway and President Pahor on shared values and firm friendship between the two nations and countries
Photo: Nebojša Tejić/STA

King Harald V of Norway and President Pahor on shared values and firm friendship between the two nations and countries
Photo: Nebojša Tejić/STA