Inflation is low, unemployment is low and doing business in Norway is very easy. Therefore, it is always a sound investment to market your goods in Norway or offer your services to Norwegians. Although the Norwegian language has two official written forms – Bokmål or “book tongue” and Nynorsk or “new Norwegian” – translations are generally performed in Bokmål, because Nynorsk is only used by around 10% of the population.
International documents are translated into the more popular variant, Bokmål, as are marketing materials, websites, product information and most correspondence. Both speakers of Bokmål as well as Nynorsk understand both languages. Norwegians also generally have an excellent grasp of English, but for cases wherein professional and accurate communication is critical, our translation agency offers quality Norwegian translation and editing services.
Why consider entering the Norwegian market?
Norway is the sixth largest country in Europe. The Norwegian market is highly developed and Norway is a high-tech society, meaning there is a huge demand for high-quality products and services. The standard of living in Norway is high, the economy is stable and the market is open. Norwegian business culture is rational and corruption is low. Norway is not a member of the European Union, but nonetheless belongs to the European Economic Area (EEA).
The Norwegian currency is the Norwegian krone (NOK). The success of the Norwegian economy and the country’s wealth are largely based on the export of oil and gas, which means that the Norwegian economy is affected by oil price fluctuations on the world market. Consequently, the government is making efforts to develop sustainable industries in Norway in addition to business focused on non-renewable mineral resources. Europe is a vital trading partner for Norway. In light of all this, Norway can be an excellent partner market for foreign companies.
What are the risks of entering the Norwegian market?
When entering the Norwegian market, you should also consider the risks. Firstly, household debt is very high. Moreover, the competitiveness of the Norwegian economy is reduced by the high salaries in Norway. In addition, there is a lack of skilled labour in high value-added economic sectors. High household debt poses a threat to macroeconomic stability. Falling oil prices and housing prices will reduce current account surpluses and negatively affect private consumption, which is the main driver behind Norway’s economic growth. At the same time, however, none of the potential risks actually threaten the strength of the Norwegian economy. The Norwegian government has the largest reserves in the world (EUR 800 billion, or 2.2 times the Norwegian GDP), to be used, if necessary, for economic recovery.
What is interesting about the Norwegian language?
All Scandinavian languages – Norwegian, Danish, Swedish, Icelandic and Faroese – are descended from Old Norse. Thus, Swedish, Danish and Norwegian are deeply similar, with the latter two – Danish and Norwegian – being especially alike. The Norwegian language only split from Danish in the course of Norway’s quest for independence in the 19th century. Norwegian is a tonal language – it sounds lyrical. Tonality is a rare phenomenon in the Indo-European languages and is more common to Asian languages, such as Chinese. Norwegian is easy to learn if you already speak English, because the language is also quite similar to English. Norwegian grammar is sometimes remarkably simple – for example, the present forms of Norwegian verbs are formed by simply adding the letter “r” to the end of the word. The word order in the Norwegian language is similar to that of English.
What are some interesting Norwegian expressions?
One interesting Norwegian expression is “Takk for sist!”, which directly translates to “Thanks for last time!”, but is actually used as an expression of joy over a reunion, essentially meaning “Nice to see you again!”. Another interesting Norwegian expression is “Håper at det smaker”, which directly translates to “Let’s hope it has taste”, but is used to say “Bon appétit!”. All Scandinavian languages have a special term to denote the kindness and warmth born from sharing life’s simple pleasures with your favourite people. In Danish, this is called “hygge”, in Swedish “mys” and in Norwegian “kos”. It is generally translated as “comfy”, “cozy” or “nice”, but the word “kos” is actually used to describe the feeling of enjoying a cup of cocoa and a good book in front of the fireplace in the winter, having a nice lunch in the school cafeteria with someone you haven’t seen in a while, merry parties with your best friends, and much, much more.
What should one consider when entering the Norwegian market?
Norwegian business culture is similar to that of other Scandinavian countries. Here are some simple tricks to make your export business in Norway more likely to succeed:
- Timeliness is important! Always be on time for meetings. If you are going to be late, call ahead to let the other party know. Norwegians are sincere, egalitarian and direct. Keep your promises and meet your deadlines.
- Exchanging pleasantries is unnecessary. The Norwegians do not consider small talk to be particularly important. During meetings, you should get straight to the point.
- Titles are not important. Greetings and introductions are done freely in Norway. After initial introductions, people are addressed using their first name without “Mr” or “Mrs”.
- Objective offers are appreciated. In Norway, analytical thinking is valued and it is considered good practice to list both pros and cons when making a product sale.
- Clothing is conservative. Appropriate clothing depends on the field of business, but modest and polite clothing, unostentatious accessories and minimal jewellery is a safe bet.
- Acceptable gifts include flowers, chocolates and pies as well as wine. Avoid giving white flowers. Giving business partners gifts to elicit favourable business decisions is considered to be corruption and is strictly prohibited in Norway.
What should one consider when ordering a Norwegian-language translation?
Translating texts into Norwegian is gaining more and more popularity among foreign companies. When ordering a Norwegian translation, you should take into account that it will take longer than our Spanish or Russian translations. This is due to the fact that there are simply fewer Norwegian translators available to us than those of Spanish or Russian. Our Norwegian-English translations are cheaper than English-Norwegian translations. Norwegian translations are at the higher end of the price spectrum of translation services. For translations into Norwegian, we use translators and editors who speak Norwegian as a native language or at least at a C2 level and are living or have spent a long time in a Norwegian-language environment. Consequently, our Norwegian-language translators’ expectations regarding pay are also higher than those of translators of other languages. Our Norwegian translators always do their best to ensure that our customers are happy with their translations.
How do I order a Norwegian translation?
To order a Norwegian translation, please send us an e-mail along with the text to be translated, if possible. If you are unable to provide the text at this point, please indicate the approximate translation volume. When ordering a Norwegian translation, be sure to also include the desired deadline and the function of the translation. If it is a technical text or a text that falls under the category of technical translation, please also include any existing term bases in your enquiry. Finally, please indicate the desired format of the completed translation and whether you require any additional services (e.g. insertion of translations into your website, translation layout, etc.). We will send you a quotation for your translation within a couple of hours. We also provide editing for Norwegian-language texts. When translating, we always keep your personal needs in mind to ensure that the completed translation meets your requirements in terms of both content and format.
Norwegian-English and English-Norwegian translations
We mainly offer Norwegian-English and English-Norwegian translations. However, do not hesitate to contact us with requests for other language pairs either – we will always do our best to find a solution to your translation needs.