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Norway is currently not a member of the European Union (EU), but is on many levels tightly associated with the Union as Norway is one of four current members of the European Economic Area (EEA) together with Iceland and Lichtenstein. Until today, Norwegian referendums have said no to Norwegian membership in the European Economic Community (EEC) in 1972 and the European Union in 1994. At the same time, Norway shares two land borders with the EU states Finland and Sweden and has the EU as its largest trading partner.
According to the European Social Survey 2018, almost 75% of Norwegian respondents said that they would vote “no” in any future referendum on Norwegian EU membership. Similarly, in an article from 2019, the political science professor John Erik Fossum at the University of Oslo suggested that Norwegians voting in the referendum 1994 were already satisfied with the current access to EU markets that the EEA agreement provides.
How has the ongoing Brexit negotiations shaped Norwegian public attitudes towards Norway’s relationship with the EU? What are the views of Norway’s two largest parties, the Conservative Party of Norway (Høyre) and Labour (Arbeiderpartiet), as regards future EU-Norwegian cooperation? And will the coming Biden administration in the US shape Norway’s trade-off between cooperation with the US on one hand and the EU on the other?