Pain of job losses acute in Stavanger

Some even darker clouds have been settling over Norway's once-booming oil capital of Stavanger. Next week the city will host another large Offshore Northern Seas conference, and that will help generate business, but thousands of laid-off oil workers are still suffering. PHOTO: Berglund

Two years after the oil and offshore industry seriously started slashing jobs, the sharp pain of job losses is now really striking many of those out of work and their families. Unemployment benefits are running out for workers laid off in the early rounds of job cuts, while a crisis center in Stavanger is reporting a worrisome rise in […]

Fashion designers ready for Oslo Runway

Models for a total of 19 Norwegian fashion designers were ready to strut their stuff at the latest Oslo Runway, opening on Wednesday at the new Sentralen venue in downtown Oslo. The event has become the new showplace for Norway’s own clothing industry. Oslo Runway aims to fill the gap left since Oslo Fashion Week ended […]

Yara’s convicted bosses back in court

fertilizer bags

Four men who served for many years as top management at Norway’s state-controlled fertilizer company Yara were back in an Oslo courtroom on Tuesday. They’re all trying to reverse their corruption convictions, while the company itself fends off new legal challenges elsewhere and deals with the release of a secret report showing how some Yara customers were […]

Iran trade deal raises concerns

Foreign Minister Børge Brende in Iran with his Iranian counterpart Zarif on Wednesday. PHOTO: Utenriksdepartementet/Frode Overland Andersen

An agreement announced this week for Norwegian-financed trade between Norway and Iran has received mixed reactions. While it may help create jobs in Norway’s hard-hit oil and gas industry, human rights organizations worry it may lead to conflicts of interest. Eksportkreditt Norge and GIEK signed a Memorandum of Intention with the Export Guarantee Fund of Iran […]

Labour violations found at DNB

Indian workers from Tata Consultancy Services have been spending far too much time on the job here at DNB's Oslo headquarters, according to labour authorities who have uncovered violations of labour regulations. PHOTO:

Regulators at Norway’s state labour authority Arbeidstilsynet have uncovered several violations of the law at Norway’s biggest bank, DNB. An investigation into claims of excessive time on the job by Indian consultants hired in from Tata Consultancy Services found that they’ve been working far too many hours a day and, in some cases, three weeks in a row […]

Mixed reaction to Statkraft privatization

A proposal to sell off some of the state’s stock in the now wholly state-owned electricity producer Statkraft has received a mixed reaction from the Members of Parliament who’d need to approve the partial privatization. The proposal, put forward by the Conservative Party that leads Norway’s minority coalition government, is backed by its two small […]

Power brokers huddled in Arendal

Finance Minister Siv Jensen (second from right) poses for a photo while attending this year's Arendalsuka, which has become known as an annual political festival. Jensen would also be taking part in Thursday night's party leader debate. PHOTO: Arendalsuka/Hanna Arrestad

Nearly all of Norway’s government ministers were live in person this week at what’s come to be called a “political festival” in Arendal, while hundreds of other power brokers were also huddling both publicly and privately. Top officials from a wide range of the country’s special interest groups and organizations, major companies and not least public relations firms also […]

Economy ‘bottoms out,’ krone to rise

It's up to Norges Bank to decide what's printed on Norwegian currency. PHOTO: Views and News

Norway’s biggest bank thinks the Norwegian economy has bottomed out for now, predicting some new growth ahead, less reliance on oil prices and a strengthening currency. Oil prices have been rising, too, and that’s always economically good for an oil-producing nation like Norway. DNB Markets, which issued its half-year report on economic prospects for Norway […]

Kongsberg avoids corruption trial

PHOTO: Kongsberg Gruppen

Kongsberg Gruppen, one of Norway’s many state-owned companies to face corruption charges in recent years, has avoided indictment while one of its former sales executives must defend himself in court against charges of fraud, money laundering and tax evasion. He denies any wrongdoing, claiming his contested transactions with Romanian contacts were in Kongsberg’s best interests and approved by […]

Stronger krone and higher food prices send shoppers fleeing over the border

Norway’s currency, the krone, has suddenly regained strength in recent weeks and that, combined with a sharp rise in food prices at Norwegian grocery stores this summer, has set off a new wave of shopping across the border in Sweden. After diving along with oil prices two years ago, the Norwegian krone that had been super-strong through […]