The business community has expressed a certain scepticism in this regard, of whether the goods in question actually can be provided in the relevant countries. But this is not what the debate is about. The question is whether the development in the third world benefits from a production locally or in Norway.
When John Vea in the Organisation for the Business Community NHO asks the authorities to «hurry at a slow pace» in this matter, we are concerned that the interests of the Norwegian industries weigh heavily for the organisation. Several other countries in OECD have given themselves a few years to shift the general practice, but this is primarily to protect their own business community.
On several occasions NorWatch has pointed out that aid money has been used to ensure contracts for Norwegian companies - Oceanor is a case in point. We have still to hear good arguments on why to prioritise Norwegian companies in this debate, in light of the individual country's opportunities and need for development. The minister has our full support in her work to prioritise locally produced goods.
Norwatch Newsletter 17/97