Front (left-right): Anne-Grete Ellingsen (GCE NODE), Christoffer Jørgenvåg (Red Rock), Trine Grande (NFD), Hilde Flåten (NFD), Lillian Siggerud (NFD),  Frode Larsen (Otechos), Siv Gaalaas (NFD), Gøril Hannaas (University of Agder) and Øyvind Hamre (Umoe Advanced Composites). Back (left-right): Lars Erik Lunøe (Maritime Protection), Øystein Andresen (NFD), Silje Skjævesland (NFD), Tom Harald Svennevig (Umoe Mandal), Knut A. Kaupang (Maritime Protection), Ivar Engan (NFD), Tom Cantero (Air Products), Jostein Hageland (Air Products) and Pål Grandal (University of Agder).

Government officials from The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Fisheries met with GCE NODE and participating companies in Kristiansand Monday.

The meeting was part of the annual ‘emptying the offices’ at the Ministry, which had 38 groups of employees travel all over Norway to visit companies, industry associations, business clusters and municipalities.

“We want and need input from the Norwegian industry sector. It is important to learn about the challenges businesses face”, explains Minister of Trade and Industry Monica Mæland.

Directors, Senior Advisors and Consultants from her Ministry came to Kristiansand to meet and enter into discussions with GCE NODE, The University of Agder, Maritime Protection, Umoe Mandal, Red Rock, Otechos and Air Products.

“It is very useful to leave our Oslo offices and meet directly with companies across Norway. It provides new perspectives on some issues, and reinforces existing perspectives on other issues. For small and medium sized companies, this represents an opportunity to be in direct contact with us”, says Ivar Engan, Senior Advisor at the Ministry’s Maritime Department.

At GCE NODE’s offices, Engan and an additional six officials were given presentations by GCE NODE and several NODE companies.

“It is a great idea to meet like this and an excellent opportunity for us at NODE and our companies to present challenges and opportunities directly to the people that will have great influence on future policy making. We are grateful for the visit, and we look forward to hosting meetings for NODE companies to further discuss governmental proposals”, says Anne-Grete Ellingsen, CEO at GCE NODE.