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Photo: Norwegian Seafood Export Council.Photo: Norwegian Seafood Export Council

Fishing tourism in Norway – export quota

05.05.2011 // The Norwegian Ministry of Fisheries and Coastal Affairs introduced an export quota on fish and fish products as of 1 June 2006. The quota limits the volume of marine fish or fish products from sport fishing that may be exported from Norway to 15 kg of fish filets per person.  

The fish product most likely to be taken out of the country by individuals is fish filets. 15 kg of filets at a conversion factor of 3.25, which is the standard factor for machine-filleted skin and bone-free filets, equates to 48 kilos of whole fish.

Figures from the Institute of Transport Economics indicate that the average catch made by foreign road tourists in 2004 was equivalent to 14.5 kg of filets per travel party (i.e. not per person) in the high season and lower for the rest of the year. An export quota of 15 kg per person will therefore not affect ordinary tourists.

The limit applies to exports from Norway and is not a direct limitation on catch volume. The export quota is not intended to affect experience-based tourist fishing. However, it is important that taxation of fish resources is made within a responsible framework.

Fishing gear

Foreign nationals not permanently resident in Norway are permitted to engage in sport fishing using hand-held gear (line, trolling line or rod) but not to sell their catch.

Export quota for fish and fish products

No more than 15 kg of fish filets or fish products can be exported from Norway per person.

The export quota applies to catch from sport fishing in Norwegian territorial waters.

  • The quota applies to whole/gutted fish or processed products, such as fish filets.
  • Fish or fish products will not be included in the quota if it can be proved that they were purchased from a registered business.
  • Freshwater fish, salmon, trout and char are not subject to the export quota.
  • The quota applies to everyone, including Norwegian citizens.
  • If the quota is exceeded, the quantity of illegal fish may be confiscated.
  • The customs service performs inspections to ensure fish are not exported in breach of the order.
  • It is permitted to export a whole trophy fish for taxidermy, etc. The quota rules do not prevent the export of single whole fish larger than 15 kg in addition to the quota.

The fishing authorities recommend restraint is exercised in relation to fishing tourism.

Minimum size

The fishing authorities requests individual tourists to comply with the same minimum fish size rules which apply to professional fishermen, except for saithe and mackerel.

Examples of the species professional fishermen are allowed to sell are shown below along with minimum sizes.



Minimum size


Entire country

80 cm


South of 62° N
North of 62° N

40 cm
44 cm


South of 62° N
North of 62° N

31 cm
40 cm


West of Lindesnes
East of Lindesnes

29 cm
27 cm



Sea trout, arctic char and salmon

Exceptions: Nordland, Troms and Finnmark
(applies to sea trout and arctic char only)

35 cm
30 cm

The length of the fish is measured from the tip of snout to the extremities of the tail.

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