Norway has a
population of 5.3 million, a land mass of 385,000 sq km, and a population
density of 15 per square kilometre. Norway exercises jurisdiction over nearly 2
million sq km of sea territory.
gained membership into the NATO Alliance in 1949. Over the past decade, the Norwegian Armed Forces have undergone
comprehensive reform and modernization.In recent years,
Norway has invested in F-35 fighter aircraft and has also committed to
investments in new submarines, new maritime patrol aircraft, new anti-aircraft
capabilities, and new main battle tank systems.
Even so, Norway’s
defence depends on our membership in NATO. This membership provides security,
but also entails obligations. These obligations have played a major part in the
development, modernisation and structuring of the Norwegian Armed Forces.
Norway is part of NATO’s northern flank, and the alliance relies on our ability
to conduct surveillance and maintain presence and readiness in the High North.
defence forces consist mainly of the Army, Navy, the Air Force, the Home Guard,
and the Special Operations Command. The total number of employees is 15,873 (2018).
In addition Norway has 7000 conscripts serving.
The Norwegian Home
Guard consists of 37,000 reservists divided across 11 districts covering the
whole of Norway. The Home Guard has also a specially trained Rapid Reaction
Force comprising of 3,000 reservists.
In the last couple
of years, several major changes have been made on the personnel side. In 2015 Norway
introduced compulsory military service also for women. Since then the
proportion of women engaged in military service has increased each year. Every year,
around 7,000 of the approximately 60,000 women and men reaching service are
specially selected for compulsory military service in the Norwegian Armed
In 2016, the Armed
Forces established a new personnel system for non-commissioned officers, the
specialist corps. The specialists follow a rank scale from OR1 to OR9-
comparable to the NATO structure.
For decades Norway
has played an active role in international cooperation and the Armed Forces
have committed major resources to operations in the Balkans, Afghanistan, the Gulf of Aden, and to combating ISIL. We
are also active participants in NATO’s Standing Maritime and Mine
Countermeasures Forces, and the NATO Response Force. In addition, Norway
continues to prioritise the provision of relevant competence to UN peacekeeping
For more information about Norway's military forces visit their national webpage or contact the National Military Representative for more detailed information.
Phone number +32 6544 4297