Government initiative for the export of health industry launched at Oslo Science Park

Published: 12 February 2024

Text: Anne-Marie Korseberg Stokke

Photo: Angelique Culvin-Riccot

This month, representatives from the entire spectrum of the Norwegian health industry gathered in Oslo Science Park's Trappa. Ministers Jan Kristian Vestre and Ingvild Kjerkhol presented 15 measures aimed at doubling the export revenues for the health industry by 2030.

"The global market for the health industry is enormous, and there is potential to increase exports even more. The 15 concrete measures we present today are aimed at fostering good public-private cooperation and enabling the industry to realize its full potential," says Minister of Trade and Industry Jan Kristian Vestre in a press release.

"We want to contribute to making the health industry a strong and important export venture. The government envisions a sustainable health and care service that maintains high quality, and for that, we need a strong collaboration with the supplier market," says Minister of Health and Care Services Ingvild Kjerkol.

CEO of Forskningsparken, Bjørn Erik Reinseth, welcomes the Minister of Trade and Industry.

The Government's fifteen measures for increased health exports

1. Joint export initiatives to key markets in Europe, North America, and Asia.

2. Mobilizing Team Norway to contribute to increased health exports.

3. Bundling of digital products.

4. Developing a specific marketing strategy for the health industry.

5. Collaborative branding and building a brand for the health industry.

6. Strengthening Invest in Norway to attract more health investments to Norway.

7. Integrating the health industry into the Nordic industrial partnership.

8. Further developing the health technology scheme to accelerate the adoption of new solutions.

9. Advancing Nortrials – a partnership between health enterprises and businesses.

10. Establishing a guidance service for municipalities and suppliers.

11. Clear guidelines on collaboration between health enterprises and businesses.

12. Harmonization of standards, including with the EU.

13. Following up on the roadmap for the health industry and maintaining close interaction with the industry.

14. The initiative is led by a project board consisting of representatives from the health industry.

15. Measuring the health industry's export development and the impact of the initiative.

Collaboration across the industry and between the public and private sectors was highlighted several times in the presentations and during the subsequent panel discussion.

"We need new solutions. The collaboration between the business sector and the healthcare sector should become even better. We have included a guideline for collaboration with the business sector in the mission document for the hospitals. This is because the business sector can and will contribute the necessary expertise for better and more innovative treatment," said Kjerkhol from the podium.

Hanne Mette Kristiansen, CEO of The Life Science Cluster, can confirm that there is good cooperation throughout the entire ecosystem:

"The national ecosystem of research institutions, TTOs, incubators, clusters, and regional players are working increasingly well and more structured together, for the benefit of those it really is about – the future export companies," she wrote on LinkedIn.

CEO of Innovation Norway, Håkon Haugli (on the right).

The Life Science Cluster is located in Oslo Science Park. As is also the cluster Norway Health Tech, the technology transfer office Inven2, the collaborative arena Health2B, and not to mention the tech incubator Startuplab, the biotech incubator ShareLab, and Aleap, the largest incubator for health startups in the Nordics. The Minister of Trade and Industry presented the roadmap for the health industry here a few months ago and was pleased to be back:

"There are more than 300 businesses located here in this community. It's great to see that an increasing number of them belong to the important health industry. I imagine that the next export successes are being drawn up in laboratories in this building at this very moment," he began his presentation.

The two ministers were met with applause, and the atmosphere in the glass corridor after the press conference indicated that the measures were well-received among the many attendees.

"We look forward to implementing the government's new measures in close collaboration with the industry. Norway has world-class health research and a young and eager health industry. This provides enormous growth potential," said Håkon Haugli, CEO of Innovation Norway, on LinkedIn.

Panel discussion with (from left) Kathrine Myhre in the National Export Council, Håkon Haugli, CEO of Innovation Norway, Leif Rune Skymoen, leader of the Pharmaceutical Industry, Peggy Hessen Følsvik, Leader of the Norwegian Confederation of Trade Unions (LO).