The major economic sectors of Svalbard are coal mining, tourism and international research. Coal mining is the dominant economic and commercial activity and the Norwegian state-owned coal company employs nearly 60% of the Norwegian population on the island, runs many of the local services, and provides most of the local infrastructure. Among other economic activities could be mentioned hunting and fishing.
Tourism contributes a lot to the island's economy. Touristic attractions are concentrated in Longyearbyen, the capital city of Svalbard. Activities include hiking, kayaking, snow-scooter and dog-sled safari.
Economic activities in Svalbard and Jan Mayen are limited. One of the services provided by the island are services for employees of Norway's radio communications and meteorological stations. Also, Norway grants permission for any nation to conduct research on Svalbard.
Jan Mayen has one significant natural resource, which is gravel, extracted from the site at Trongskaret.
There are also important fishing resources in Jan Mayen. Even more, geologists suspect the existence of significant deposits of petroleum and natural gas below Jan Mayen's surrounding seafloors.
Other economic activities, such as agriculture, are not developed in Svalbard, mainly because of the climate. There are no arable lands, as 60% of the territory is covered with ice, another 30% with barren rock and only 10% of the island's landmass is covered with vegetation. Thus, agriculture remains a minor economic factor. However, Svalbard is home to the Global Seed Vault, which serves to protect the world's biological and agricultural diversity.
Regarding trade partners, it should be mentioned that Svalbard and Jan Mayen's trade with the United States rose to $122,628 in the first 8 months months of 2016. The island ranked 232 among the US top trade partners for the current period.
Svalbard and Jan Mayen is a statistical designation of two parts of Norway under separate jurisdictions—Svalbard and Jan Mayen.
Svalbard is an archipelago situated in the Arctic Ocean about midway between mainland Norway and the North Pole. It is under the full sovereignty of Norway, but is subject to the special status granted by the Svalbard Treaty.
Jan Mayen is a remote island in the Arctic Ocean. It has no permanent population and is administrated by the County Governor of Nordland.
As Svalbard and Jan Mayen are parts of Norwegian territory, they share the same regulations regarding customs clearance for imports and exports.
For more information on Norway customs, please follow the link >>