This thesis is about(re)formation of Norwegian development policy and investigates the Norwegian state-led aid program 'Oil for Development' (OfD). As a public-private partnerhsip aiming to draw on the competence of the petroleum sector, OfD provides an interface between actors from the public and private sphere and is a 'rara avis' in Norwegian development. I discuss the motivations for creating the program, study the initiation phase of OfD's cooperation with Ghana in 2008, and analyse the private actors' influence through OfD.
Global neo-liberalization has led to the proliferation of arrangements where business actors work together with nation-states. Drawing on International Political Economy (IPE), which opens for analysis of not only state actors on the international arena, and in particular on Fucs and Lederer's (2007) tripartite understanding of power, I analyse power relations among the actors in this case study; the Norwegian state, Ghana, and the Norwegian petroleum industry.
I argue that OfD is a strategic part of Norwegian foreign politics, mixing foreign, development and industrial policy to serve both altruistic and commercial objectives of the Norwegian state, but that the program's economic movitation of contributing to internationalization of the Norwegian petroleum industry is not openly debated. The mix of policy agendas in itself is not a new phenomenon, but the way in which this is institutionalized through the OfD initiative represents something new in Norway's development landscape.