US-Norway Bilateral Defense Agreements: a partnership that strengthens NATO


The defense partnership between the United States and Norway plays a crucial role for both American and Norwegian national defense. Less understood is the important and positive role that these US-Norwegian bilateral defense agreements (BLDAs) have for NATO. In the words of the Norwegian government, “NATO is the foundation of Norwegian security, and the USA is Norway’s most important ally.” In practical terms, US-Norwegian BLDAs are the glue that binds the US, Norway, and NATO together. This policy brief elaborates this point by offering a short exploration of the following: 1) NATO’s connection to the bilateral US-Norwegian defense relationship; 2) an overview of how and why BLDAs are used in the US-Norwegian defense relationship, 3) a review of different BLDA types, and 4) an overview of key bilateral US-Norwegian defense agreements.