Less loans to the Norwegian continental shelf


The total positions of foreign direct investment in the mining and quarrying industry in Norway were NOK 269 billion in 2018. This is a noticeable decrease from 2017, where the positions were at NOK 332 billion. The total positions have fallen every year since its highest in 2014.

The total positions on foreign direct investment in Norway at the end of 2018 was NOK 1261 billion. Even though there has been a falling trend the last few years in the positions in the mining and quarry industry, it remains at over 20 per cent of total inward positions. It is the industry with the highest total position of foreign direct investment in Norway, followed by the manufacturing industry.

Reduction in debt instruments

The decrease in investments in the mining and quarrying industry are largely due to a reduction in debt instruments since the end of 2014, that mainly means less loans to this industry from foreign investors. The total positions for shares and other equity have been relatively stable since the end of 2013. Total inward positions are made up of total shares and other equity and debt instruments by foreign investors in Norway. From 2017, foreign direct investment in Norway in shares and other equity has been higher than the debt instruments for the mining and quarry industry, for the first time since the time series began in 2013.

Figure 1. Foreign direct investment in Norway, total positions, mining and quarrying

2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018
Total positions 364 414 388 373 332 269
Shares and other equity 167 160 146 139 169 161
Debt instruments 197 253 243 234 163 107

Good income despite decrease in total positions

Despite the decrease in total positions in the foreign direct investment in Norway in the mining and quarry industry, the investments have given a good income to the foreign direct investors the past two years. In 2018 NOK 35 billion was paid out in distributed earnings, which despite a reduction from NOK 42 billion in 2017, is still higher than in 2015 and 2016. At the same time the reinvested earnings in the industry was negative in 2017 and marginally positive in 2018. This means that the return on equity on these investments have not been as good as the distributed earnings indicate. At the same time, 2018 is the first year since 2013 that reinvested earnings are positive in this industry, which makes 2018 the year with the best return on equity in several years.