NOK 500 million for the modernization of ferry connections in Norway

By Marek Grzybowski

Nordic Investment Bank (NIB) has granted a loan of NOK 500 million (EUR 43.4 million) to Norled. The loan will finance the expansion of the low-emission ferry fleet. This is NIB’s first loan under the InvestEU program in Norway.
NIB announced that the 7-year loan was intended to co-finance the investment of the ferry and express boat operator Norled AS. The operator will allocate this amount to zero- and low-emission ships. These funds will also be used to build land infrastructure necessary to operate electric ferries.
The InvestEU program supports a loan under the NIB framework operation “Green Mobility and Transport” approved by the Investment Committee. It is being implemented in Norway in 2024–2030.
– Norway is rapidly electrifying its transport network, aiming to reduce Norwegian emissions in the transport industry by 50% by 2030 – emphasizes NIB in a statement justifying the loan.

NOK 500 million for ecological transformation
– By financing the ecological transformation of the Nordic ferry sector, NIB not only supports the decarbonization of maritime transport, but also initiates changes in various industries, such as green hydrogen, batteries and hybrid solutions – emphasizes Harald Rokke, director, Infrastructure & Project Finance and Country Lead for Norway.
It is emphasized that Norled plays a key role in introducing short-range electric ferries into service. It is also a pioneer in the use of new fuels such as hydrogen.
Norled AS is one of Norway’s largest ferry and express boat operators. The operator has 25 contracts for the provision of public transport services on 50 routes along the Norwegian coast. The company manages a fleet of 41 ferries and 34 express boats. Supports connections in fjords. It provides, among others: services from Troms, Nordland, Trøndelag, Møre og Romsdal, Vestland, Rogaland, Oslo, Akershus and Østfold.
Norled has approximately 1,200 employees and is headquartered in Stavanger with branches in Bergen and Oslo. Norled is a subsidiary of global real estate investor CBRE Investment Management.

InvestEU for decarbonization
The InvestEU program provides the European Union, as well as Norway and Iceland, with key long-term financing by using private and public funds to support decarbonization policy priorities and innovation in public spaces. The funds are allocated, among others, to: for goals such as ecological and digital transformation.
The Nordic Investment Bank (NIB), headquartered in Helsinki, Finland, is an international financial institution. The bank was founded by five Nordic countries in 1975 with the aim of overcoming investment barriers and attracting commercial loans. In 2005, the three Baltic countries joined the NIB on equal terms with the original members.
Nordic Investment Bank is an international financial institution owned by eight member countries: Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway and Sweden. The bank finances private and public projects in member countries and beyond. NIB has the highest possible credit rating of AAA/Aaa from leading rating agencies Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s.
NIB emphasizes that its mission is to finance projects that improve productivity and benefit the environment in the Nordic and Baltic countries.

NIB mission and loans worth EUR 4.1 billion 
The mission was defined by the countries that own the Bank to meet the needs of the region and the challenges it faces. The bank’s support focuses on supporting sustainable growth and also finances projects related to technological innovation, climate change, the development of the circular economy and the protection of the marine environment.
– NIB has disbursed EUR 3.7 billion to customers and signed new loans worth EUR 4.1 billion in 2022. These agreements cover renewable energy generation, transmission networks and energy efficiency improvements – all to increase the resilience of our region – NIB reports in the annual report
NIB management reports: “To meet these needs, we have raised a record €9.6 billion in new financing. For the first time since we started offering NIB Environmental Bonds (NEB), our annual environmental issuance has exceeded €1 billion.” NEB transactions are executed in EUR, DKK, NOK and SEK.