It looks like a maritime cluster will be established in the north after 60 participants from the maritime industry gathered in Narvik on September 15.
Norut Narvik, together with Maritime Forum North and Bodø Graduate School of Business, has taken the initiative to gather representatives from the maritime industry in the north. The starter’s gun sounded in Narvik on September 15.
The goal is to form a new, strong cluster. The initial purpose of the cluster is to map development ambitions, development directions and resources among the central maritime actors. The next step will be to establish a collaboration arena.
In terms of added value, the maritime industry is number two in Norway after the oil and gas sector. The challenge in the north is that the maritime industry is extremely fragmented and comprises many small actors.
The companies that have registered their interest for the Arctic maritime cluster collectively employ 4500 people in Norway’s four northernmost counties. The companies include shipping companies, oil companies, suppliers, the engineering industry and organisations.
“It is possible to significantly increase the added value in the maritime industry in this part of the country,” says the Managing Director of Norut Narvik, Terje Nordvåg.
“Here in the north one factor that is common for us all is the Arctic climate. Infrastructure and operation in Arctic areas poses unique challenges associated with design, building, operation and logistics.”
“Norut Narvik’s contribution to the cluster is in particular our competence in cold climate technology linked to constructions, materials, ice mechanics and development of new technology that is in demand,” says Nordvåg.
Specific challenges in the north
The north of Norway poses specific challenges that demand new technology and expertise, the Vice President of Troms Offshore Østen Mortvedt said to the newspaper Avisa Nordland on August 13 this year.
A maritime cluster in the north can succeed in areas within construction and design or utilisation of technology in modern offshore and shipping operation, according to Mortvedt. He also mentioned the opportunities that exist in R & D within operations in cold climate.
Norut Narvik Managing Director Terje Nordvåg