The Nordic countries, a region that includes Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark and Iceland, constitutes a stable, growing market area, which offers many opportunities for foreign enterprises, because of their great purchasing power, as well as for their geographical advantages and for their outsourcing processes, linked to new technologies, services and tourism.
Although only Sweden, Finland and Denmark are part of the European Union (and only Finland has adopted the European single currency), Norway and Iceland are members of the Schengen area of free movement and of the European Economic Area (EEA), which in practice implies the absence of border controls for goods and people between these countries and the rest of Europe.
The commercial bilateral relations of the Nordic countries with Spain have an extended tradition and their societies are economically close. The exchange of goods and services intensifies especially after the entry of Spain into the European Union and today these States are trade partners with a high degree of consolidation.
With regard to the value of their trade transactions, Sweden is Spain’s first partner, with € 2.46 billion in exports in 2021 and € 2.67 billion in imports. It is followed by Denmark, with € 1.97 billion in exports and 1.8 billion in imports during the same year. Norway is in the third place: € 1.3 billion in exported products and services and € 1.32 billion imported. Lastly, Spain exports annually to Finland the equivalent in value to € 1.06 billion euro, while imports from there amount to about € 1.14 billion.
The sectors with potential to develop opportunities for Spanish enterprises in Scandinavia are varied. Spain is a benchmark in environment, sustainable development, and clean energy and this does not go unnoticed in the Nordic countries: there are multiple ways of established cooperation between enterprises of both parts. Much attention needs to be paid to public demand, both at the state and municipal levels, because of the extensive net of public enterprises in the Nordic sectors of transportation, telecommunication or naval weaponry.
The potential of private demand is equally important in these countries which, while not having large populations (the most populated Scandinavian country is Sweden, with less than 10 million inhabitants), enjoy great purchasing power. Among the products with the highest potential for private use there are motor vehicles, electrical appliances, cosmetics, fruits and vegetables, fashion or wine. The Nordic consumer is ready to pay a little more in exchange of better quality and in this sense is much less price sensitive than in other markets, like the Baltic ones.
In addition to being attractive markets for many Spanish products, the Scandinavian countries also offer important opportunities in the areas of tourism (Spain is one of their first holiday destinations in the world) and in those labor-intensive, as the outsourcing of services, because the very high Scandinavian labor costs bring their companies to look for more competitive solutions in other relatively close environments.