Falling oil prices keep interest rates low

Norway’s central bank decided once again on Thursday to keep its key lending rate at its low level of 1.5 percent, with many analysts now predicting it’s more likely to be cut in the near future than raised. With the world economy in low gear and oil prices falling, the chance of an interest rate […]

Russian billionaire gains offshore foothold

Russian billionaire Mikhail Fridman has suddenly emerged as a major player in several offshore Norwegian oil fields, after taking over RWE Dea of Germany. RWE boasts itself that it has participated in five of the most important oil discoveries on the Norwegian Continental Shelf in recent years. Newspaper Dagsavisen reported Thursday that Norway’s Oil and Energy Ministry […]

State budget battle begins in earnest

Prime Minister Erna Solberg (right) and Finance Minister Siv Jensen face tough weeks ahead, as they battle not only with the opposition over their proposed state budget, but also with their own support parties. PHOTO: NTB Scanpix

Prime Minister Erna Solberg got a taste this week of the state budget battle her government faces this autumn. A united opposition, including her government’s so-called “support parties,” grilled her in Parliament on Wednesday, while her own support party leaders accused her of poor leadership. Attacks on the conservative government’s budget were expected from the socialist parties like […]

‘Norway’s oil age is not over,’ yet

Oil Minister Tord Lien on Ekofisk platform

Tord Lien, Norway’s government minister for oil and energy, isn’t letting himself be overly concerned by the recent, some say dramatic, fall in oil prices. Lien believes oil companies will continue to be interested in tapping into Norway’s large oil reserves, and that there are still large amounts of oil and gas off Norway just waiting […]

Union wants to oust Qatar Airways

Qatar Airways, shown here taking off from Oslo's main airport at Gardermoen, should be banned from serving Norway because its working conditions violate human rights, claims Norwegian labour union Parat. PHOTO Oslo Lufthavn AS/Espen Solli

The head of the labour organization representing many airline employees in Norway, Parat, is calling on Norwegian authorities to revoke Qatar Airways’ right to operate flights from Norway because of the way it treats its employees. Vegar Einan claimed the airline “systematically undermines the rights of its workers.” Einan, who earlier has been part of legal challenges […]

Norway ‘doesn’t have much extra gas’ for EU

Norway’s oil and energy minister, Tord Lien, said Tuesday that Norway has “a theoretical capacity” to export 120 billion cubic meters of gas a year to Europe, but is already exporting “about 106 billion cubic meters.” The gap “doesn’t give us much extra gas” to export without cutting into oil production, Lien said. Tensions resulting […]

Finally some good news from Yara

Yara plans to greatly expand production capacity at its plant in Porsgrunn, about a two-hour drive southwest of Oslo. PHOTO: Yara International

One of Norway’s largest companies, fertilizer producer Yara International, could finally report some good news on Wednesday after being caught up in a corruption scandal and, most recently, top executive drama. Yara announced that it was preparing to greatly expand production capacity at one of its major plants in Norway and could also report strong quarterly earnings. Yara […]

Aurland shoes still surviving in style

The classic Aurland shoe, which inspired the American penny loafer, has become a fashion object, selling in a wide variety of colors. PHOTO: newsinenglish.no

They inspired the American penny loafer and were meant to be practical, locally made shoes. Now the small Aurland Shoe Factory that’s still making them in the scenic fjordside Norwegian town by the same name is celebrating its 75th anniversary, in style. Aurland, located in the mountainous county of Sogn og Fjordane, could once boast fully 19 shoe factories. Today Aurland […]

Yara ‘surprised’ by collapse of merger talks

The new acting chief executive of Norwegian fertilizer firm Yara International said he was “surprised” that CF Industries of the US has suddenly backed out of talks aimed at merging the two firms. Torgeir Kvidal thinks CF cut off the talks too early. “This was surprising,” Kvidal told newspaper Dagens Næringsliv (DN) Friday morning after […]

Industrialist Mohn paid most tax of all

Bergen industrialist and philanthropist Trond Moe is opening up his wallet again, this time to help fund a social democratic "think tank" on the left side of Norwegian politics. PHOTO: Wikipedia Commons/Flickr

Industrialist Trond Mohn of Bergen, known for being one of Norway’s biggest philanthropists, also paid the most tax of any other Norwegian last year. Kjell Inge Røkke paid the next-largest amount, on a much bigger net worth but listing zero in actual income. Mohn paid NOK 135.55 million (nearly USD 21 million) in taxes to […]