Who we are

OfD is a programme which unites the efforts of a range of public and private institutions representing diverse skills and competences. Below we briefly introduce the Norwegian and international institutions which are involved.




OfD has a ministerial Steering Committee with representatives from four ministries: Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA), Ministry of Finance (MoF), Ministry of Petroleum and Energy (MPE) and Ministry of the Environment (MoE). The Steering Committee formulates strategic directions, guidelines and priorities for the Secretariat and implementing organizations, and decides on major project proposals. The Steering Committee also ensures overall quality control of the OfD programme.

The OfD Secretariat is part of the Energy Department in Norad (Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation), and is responsible for coordination and implementation of the OfD programme, including operational management, information exchange and facilitation of quality control.




The Norwegian embassies play an essential role in OfD, as extensive development cooperation responsibility is assigned to them. The embassies hold valuable local and regional knowledge, and network extensively with government agencies, industry, civil society as well as international organizations and Other donors in their respective countries. Requests for OfD assistance are normally channelled through the embassies, and embassy staff generally appraises and provides advice on proposals for cooperation. The OfD Secretariat, in cooperation with the respective ministries of the Steering Committee, is responsible for the professional content of the different initiatives in the OfD programme.




Key implementing agencies are the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD), the Petroleum Safety Authority Norway (PSA), the Climate and Pollution Agency (Klif), the Norwegian Directorate for Nature Management (DN), and Petrad as well as the Steering Committee ministries. A range of consultancies, research institutions and NGOs are also involved. The Norwegian oil and gas industry may be drawn upon in transferring competence and knowledge, in line with OfD’s Guidelines for Use of the Petroleum Industry. A more detailed description of the implementing institutions is found below.


The Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA)

The MFA is both a preparatory and an executive body in foreign policy matters, economic foreign policy issues and aid-related matters. The Ministry has two ministers; the Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Minister of the Environment and International Development, both with their own areas of constitutional responsibility.

The MFA has an important coordinating and advisory role vis-à-vis Other ministries as it is the Minister of Foreign Affairs who is responsible for the organization, coordination and implementation of Norwegian foreign policy. The Ministry is also responsible for a number of government institutions, including Norad.

The objective of Norway’s development policy is to fight poverty and bring about social justice. In 2010 the Government spent approximately NOK 27 billion for emergency relief and development cooperation. Areas that are given particular priority in the development cooperation budget are environment and sustainable development, peace building, human rights and humanitarian assistance, petroleum and clean energy, women and gender equality, good governance and anti-corruption efforts.

The MFA heads the Steering Committee for the OfD programme.


The Norwegian Ministry of Petroleum and Energy (MPE)

The MPE holds the overall responsibility for management of petro87 leum operations on the Norwegian continental shelf. This includes ensuring that the petroleum activities are carried out in accordance with the laws and guidelines laid down by the Storting (parliament), which determines the framework for petroleum operations in Norway, and the government. The primary functions of the MPE are:

  • Development of the legal, regulatory and institutional framework for petroleum activities in Norway
  • Preparation and implementation of policies, such as opening new acreage and licensing, handling of field development, production and transport plans and environmental issues related to the petroleum activities
  • Implementation of Memoranda of Understanding for cooperation with the authorities in Other countries
  • Internationalization of the Norwegian petroleum sector; the INTSOK foundation has been established to assist the MPE in this process.
  • Monitoring state-owned companies in the petroleum sector.

The MPE is a member of the Steering Committee for the OfD programme. The Ministry also coordinates the involvement of the NPD and the PSA. The Norwegian Ministry of the Environment (MoE) The MoE was established in 1972 as one of the first ministries of its kind in the world.

The MoE is responsible for the overall environmental policy in Norway, coordinating the government’s environmental policy objectives, and ensuring follow-up and monitoring of results of environmental policies. The Ministry serves as the secretariat for the Minister of The Environment and International Development, and is the catalyst for new policy and legislation. It is also responsible for providing sufficient budgetary and Other administrative means to fulfil environmental goals. The basic legislation includes laws and regulations in the fields of pollution control, nature conservation, cultural heritage and planning and building.

Environmental policy is divided into eleven target areas, with a main focus on climate change, sustainable use and protection of biodiversity, and hazardous substances. The Ministry also has expertise in regional planning, mapping and geographical data (geodata), and is involved in an extensive international and bilateral cooperation.

The MoE is a member of the Steering Committee for the OfD programme. The Ministry also coordinates the involvement of the Norwegian Directorate for Nature Management and the Climate and Pollution Agency in the OfD programme. The Norwegian Ministry of Finance (MoF) The MoF is responsible for:

  • Planning and implementing economic policy
  • Coordinating the preparation of the fiscal budget
  • Giving guidelines for monetary policy
  • Ensuring government revenues by maintaining and developing the tax system
  • Managing government financial assets, including the Government Pension Fund
  • Monitoring financial markets and drawing up regulations.

The Ministry has delegated the operational management of the Government Pension Fund Global to Norges Bank (Central Bank of Norway). The Ministry also has the responsibility for several government institutions e.g. the Directorate of Taxes and Statistics Norway.

The MoF is engaged in a wide international cooperation, both with Other countries, e.g. tax agreements, and in international organizations primarily concerned with cooperation on economic policy.

The MoF is a member of the Steering Committee for the OfD programme. Through OfD the Ministry of Finance is actively involved in Timor-Leste and Uganda providing support and advice on economic policy and revenue management.


The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD)

The NPD is administratively subordinate to the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy (MPE).

The paramount objective of the NPD is to contribute to creating the greatest possible values for society from the oil and gas activities by means of prudent resource management based on safety, emergency preparedness and safeguarding of the external environment.

The primary functions of the NPD are to:

  • Exercise administrative and financial control to ensure that petroleum activities are carried out in accordance with applicable legislation, regulations, guidelines, decisions and licensing terms
  • Ensure that petroleum activities are carried out in accordance with the guidelines laid down by the MPE
  • Advise the MPE on issues relating to subsea natural resource exploration and exploitation
  • Issue regulations relating to resource management
  • Supervise the industry’s compliance with regulations for resource management
  • Perform resource assessments and maintain a resource inventory
  • Ensure that petroleum activities minimize discharges and emissions to the external environment
  • Manage and make available petroleum data and information
  • Audit fiscal metering systems
  • Ensure security of petroleum deliveries
  • Handle CO2 tax issues on behalf of the MOF
  • Emphasize cost-effectiveness in exploration and production, costeffectiveness in utilization of the infrastructure and coordination across production licenses
  • Support sister organizations in Other petroleum producing countries through institutional cooperation or technical assistance.

The NPD has assisted developing countries in petroleum resource management for more than 25 years. The assistance is mainly directed towards long-term institutional cooperation with sister organizations having similar governance functions on a wide range of issues.

The NPD assists Norad and the MFA in planning and implementing petroleum sector support to authorities in selected countries and regional organizations under the OfD programme.

For more information, please visit www.npd.no


Petroleum Safety Authority Norway (PSA)

The Petroleum Safety Authority Norway has regulatory responsibility for safety, emergency preparedness and the working environment in Norwegian offshore petroleum operations and at certain petroleum facilities and associated pipeline systems on land. The PSA reports to the Ministry of Labour.

Through its own supervisory activities, and in cooperation with Other agencies holding independent regulatory responsibility for health, safety and the environment (HSE), the PSA ensures that the petroleum industry is subject to comprehensive supervision. The PSA provides information and advice to stakeholders in the petroleum industry, cooperates with Other HSE authorities both nationally and internationally, and contributes to sharing and promoting knowledge about HSE in society at large.

The aim of the PSA’s international work is to support the recipient country in creating and/or developing a regulatory regime in the safety and working environment area, which facilitates the development of petroleum activities in an acceptable manner. The most significant part of the PSA’s international development work involves projects run by Norad. The PSA has also provided contributions to courses and programmes organized by Petrad as well as hosted delegations visiting Norway as part of an ongoing or planned assistance project. In most such projects, regulation of safety and the working environment has been one topic in a broader petroleum-related context.

For more information, please visit www.ptil.no


The Climate and Pollution Agency (Klif)

The Climate and Pollution Agency (Klif) is an executive agency subordinated the Norwegian Ministry of the Environment. Klif’s vision is a future without pollution.

Klif is working to:

  • Reduce greenhouse gas emissions
  • Reduce the spread of substances harmful to health and environment
  • Achieve a holistic and ecosystem based management of water bodies and oceans
  • Increase recycling and reducing emissions from waste
  • Reduce harmful effects from air pollution and noise

Klif’s functions and roles are to:

  • Monitor and inform about state and trends in the environment
  • Exercise authority through regulations and compliance monitoring
  • Instruct and guide County Governors
  • Advice the Norwegian Ministry of the Environment
  • Participate in international environmental cooperation

In the context of the OfD programme, Klif may provide advice and support in capacity building within its areas of responsibility based on the agency’s long time experience related to Norwegian oil and gas industry activities. This includes advice and exchange of experience regarding environmental impact assessment reviews, permitting, discharge standards, emission quota systems, use of chemicals waste handling, oil spill contingency preparedness and environmental and compliance monitoring and reporting.

For more information, please visit www.klif.no


The Norwegian Directorate for Nature Management (DN)

The Norwegian Directorate for Nature Management serves as an executive an advisory body for the Ministry of Environment, and its main areas of responsibility include outdoor recreation and the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity.

The Directorate assists the government in its environmental protection work at national and international level, and is responsible for implementing the government’s environmental policy, and for identifying, preventing and dealing with environmental problems.

DN’s main tasks include:

  • Safeguarding the variation of Norway´s natural environment and landscape and maintain the natural production capacity
  • Ensuring that consideration for the long-term use of natural resources is taken into account in connection with oceans and coastal management, land-use and watercourse planning and plans that affect the natural environment
  • Having management responsibilities for wildlife, freshwater fish, protected areas and invasive alien species
  • Maintaining overview of present and future ecological effects of climate change in Norway and developing adaptation and mitigation measures within nature management
  • Promoting opportunities to use nature for outdoor recreation, training and harvesting
  • Procuring and disseminating knowledge as the basis for active and preventive transparent nature management
  • Performing national management and advisory duties for global and regional multilateral environment conventions and agreements on biodiversity

The DN serves as an advisor to Norad on issues related to biological diversity, biotechnology and sustainable use of natural resources. Within the OfD programme, DN is involved in strategic and environmental impact assessments (SEA and EIA), land use planning, biodiversity mapping and monitoring, and management of environmental information.

For more information, please visit www.dirnat.no



Petrad is a non-profit Norwegian government foundation established in 1989 to facilitate transfer of knowledge and experience within petroleum management, as well as administration and technology to authorities in countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the countries of the former Soviet Union. Petrad organizes eight-week programmes on Petroleum Policy and Resource Management and Petroleum Development and Operations in Stavanger, Norway.

In addition, Petrad organizes training modules worldwide, as well as tailormade seminars covering a range of different topics within petroleum management, administration and technology. The programmes last from one day to 10 weeks and are staged in Norway and abroad. All of Petrad’s courses and seminars have a practical focus.

Petrad also offers and facilitates advisory and consultancy services in institutional development throughout all phases of petroleum sector development. Petrad’s Capacity and Training Needs Assessment (CTN A) service is an organizational development tool designed to perform a systematic analysis of institutional competence needs. Petrad draws on key personnel and lecturers from the Norwegian and international petroleum industry.

Petrad has a staff of 11 persons and its annual turnover is NOK 57.9 million.

For more information, please visit www.petrad.no


Other agencies

A range of consultancies and research institutions are also involved in implementing the OfD-initiative. Current framework agreements, entered into in July 2010, are with Arntzen de Besche, Bridge Consult AS, and IPAN AS (International Petroleum Associates A/S) and run to 90 July 2013. OfD may also draw upon Norad’s general framework agreements.

OfD draws upon the competence of Norwegian and international oil and service companies, for example INTSOK, on some issues, particularly in areas such as education/vocational training, technology transfer and generating industrial/economic spin-offs from oil sector activities.

OfD’s objective is to strengthen capacity and competence in government institutions and civil society, not to secure upstream contracts for Norwegian or international companies. Cooperation with the industry is therefore always based on careful analyses of roles and responsibilities of different stakeholders, and efforts are made to ensure that OfD is contributing to a level playing-field among competing oil industry players, and not the opposite.

OfD’s Guidelines for Use of the Petroleum Industry as well as more detailed information and news concerning the OfD-programme, can be found on: www.norad.no