The Kingdom of Norway and the German Republic have developed close relations in recent decades, both through economic cooperation and military cooperation through NATO. King Harald and Queen Sonja as well as Crown Prince Haakon have received the President of Germany, Frank-Walter Steinmeier and his wife at the Royal Palace in Oslo as they began a visit to the country.
The German president’s two-day official visit to Norway began on November 4th 2021. After the audience at the Palace, the Royal Couple invited the Presidential Couple to lunch, where the President of the Norwegian Parliament, Eva Kristin Hansen, and Norway’s Minister of Petroleum and Energy, Marte Mjøs Persen, were among the guests. Crayfish were served as an appetizer, while the main course consisted of turbot with carrot, pumpkin, celery and potatoes with red wine sauce. For dessert, the guests were given mullets with liquorice and white chocolate.
The Crown Prince was on board the German naval vessel FGS Berlin on the same morning. The German military ship is in Oslo in connection with President Steinmeier’s visit. Crown Prince Haakon was given a tour of the German supply ship accompanied by the Presidential couple and Norway’s Chief of Defence, Eirik Kristoffersen.
A briefing was also given on German-Norwegian defence co-operation. At this moment a total of 60 Norwegian women and men from all branches of the defence forces serve in Germany. Norway has contributed to the NATO operation Enhanced Forward Presence since the spring of 2017. The operation is led by Germany, and Norway has contributed a mechanized company that at most numbered 200 men and women from the Royal Norwegian Army. The German and Norwegian submarine weapons have also enjoyed close cooperation for many years.
Frank-Walter Steinmeier has been Germany’s president since 2017. He has previously been both foreign minister and vice chancellor. On Friday this week he will visit Utøya together with Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre. Later in the day, the President and Prime Minister participate in a panel discussion in the University’s Hall in Oslo on democracy, the need to engage young people in politics and the threat of extremism and hate speech.