Young lawyer to head China mission

Victoria Braathen

A TROMSØ lawyer will help lead the Norway Seafood Council’s trade drive in China from next summer.
Victoria Braathen, 34, who takes over from Sigmund Bjørgo after his six years in the Far East, will be facing a few challenges.
There has been growing impatience in Norway over what is perceived as a lack of progress in substantially increasing farmed salmon exports, despite a diplomatic breakthrough and several high powered trade missions earlier in the year.
The online fishing newspaper iLaks.no recently reported that one major Chinese importer bought just 42 tonnes of salmon in a week – the equivalent of two trailer loads.
However, talks between the two countries aimed at securing a free trade deal and allaying Chinese fears over salmon hygiene are in progress.
And seafood exporters were present at an important Norway-China seafood expo in the city of Qingdao earlier this week.
Braathen has been employed at the seafood council since last year, but has recently taken leave of absence to work at the EFTA Secretariat in Geneva. She will be based in Shanghai when she moves to Chine next year.
Describing her appointment as a ‘fantastic opportunity and a privilege’, she said: ‘I am looking forward to taking on this challenge a lot. This is an exciting time for Norwegian seafood in China.
‘There is a great growth potential not just for salmon and cod but also for other species from Norwegian waters.’
Braathen is a graduate lawyer from the University of Bergen, where she specialised in commercial and international law.
She has also worked with the North-Arctic Frontiers conference, and was a political adviser at the Ministry of Trade and Fisheries.
Picture: Victoria Braathen