Saturday, April 13, 2013

[Norway] - Surrogacy in Norway a Touchy Issue - Tove Andersson

A country that we don't hear a lot about with regard to surrogacy is Norway.  Tove Andersson reports on the unlikelihood of surrogacy laws in Norway changing anytime soon.

[Source: Foreigner]

Labor’s (Ap) Health Minister Jonas Gahr Støre has no intention of changing Norway’s anti-surrogacy laws. Nevertheless Norwegians travel to other countries to rent a womb, or ‘shopping in baby factories’, as some surrogacy opponents describe it.

The Christian Democrats (KrF) are concerned a modification to biotechnology legislation will allow surrogacy. Ministry of Health officials have suggested that parents who break the law by buying a surrogacy abroad should not be punished.

Kjersti Toppe MP, Centre’s (Sp) health policy spokesperson and vice chair of Parliament’s Standing Committee on Health and Care, disagrees. Now India is putting its foot down for Norwegian “surrogate tourism”.

India will be tightening visa requirements for visitors who come to use a surrogate mother. Only heterosexual couples who have been married for at least two years and who can show a statement that surrogacy is allowed in their country will be accepted. Norway has made it clear that such statements will not be issued. 

Author Mala Naveen’s book “The Global Baby” came after an intense debate on exploitation of poor women. The recent death of a surrogate mother and HRH the Crown Princess Mette-Marit’s ‘surrogate journey’ to India sharpened its tone.
Mala Naveen has roots in both India and Norway. She has gained access to a side of India unknown to most. With a pregnant belly, she traveled to speak to doctors, activists, Indian surrogates and Norwegian parents of surrogate children.

Surrogacy is an unregulated area. Fertility clinics insert more embryos than necessary, and then inject potassium chloride in the fetal heart. The heart stops, and consequently the fetus dies in order to reduce the number. Selective reduction is one of many ethical difficulties pointed out by opponents.

Tove Andersson'The Global Baby' is a thought-provoking book. Mala Naveen has gone to the core and devoted space to the much media-publicized cases of surrogacy. She started out wondering why American surrogates were considered altruistic, while Indian women are believed not to have the right to decide over their own bodies.

The book raises many questions. "Designer babies" and the possibilities for the pursuit of a particular look is undoubtedly something one has in mind. The economic aspect is obvious: women are helping each other with a transfer of payment. It is easy to be moralistic.

Mala Naveen was childless for a few years, wondering if she should use surrogacy if did not succeed in getting pregnant. Although she did, she followed her thought and concluded that she is not against surrogacy - but for regulation.
'The Global Baby' is a book that provides knowledge and insight. One weakness of surrogacy is that the unborn child’s eventual need to know who its biological parents are is not taken into consideration.

Norwegian daily Dagsavisen reports that neither the Health and Care, nor the Foreign Ministry can say how many surrogate children are imported to Norway from India, the US, Colombia, Russia, Malaysia, or the Ukraine.

Egg donation is permitted in Sweden, Denmark and Finland. We can only suppose that they have solved the ethical debate.

Book ‘Den Globale Baby’ published by Aschehoug is currently only available in Norwegian.

[Source: Foreigner]

1 comment:

Fertilityconnections said...

The concept of surrogacy is becoming popular in various parts of the world. But the instances of sperm and egg donations are not being highlighted in countries like Norway. Thanks for sharing the news and updates on the growing popularity of surrogacy.