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Kristiansand was founded by King Christian the Fourth of Denmark in 1641. The city was founded in a strategic location, and Kristiansand soon developed into a booming city of trade and commerce. The close distance and safe shelter to key European markets became one of the most distinct characters of the city of Kristiansand, and still is one of the most important competitive advantage the City of Kristiansand enjoys.

A large part of the regional industry today is connected to offshore and trade activity, all depending on efficient port services.  Due to major companies and leading actors of both import and export, The Port of Kristiansand enjoys a trade balance of import and export, ensuring efficient cargo handling.