Restaurant inspectors no longer smiling

This is what restaurants want to be able to post, but only about 40 percent were awarded state insepctors' smiley face symbol after their latest visits to Oslo area eateries. PHOTO:

Inspectors from Norway’s state food safety agency Mattilsynet had little to smile about after their most recent visits to 1,100 restaurants in the Oslo area. Six out of 10 restaurants failed to earn the smiley face insignia that symbolizes good hygiene. Norwegian Broadcasting (NRK) reported Thursday that only 41 percent of the eating places inspected […]

Warnings issued over consumer loans

Collection agencies in Norway have been busy this year, with the numbers of Norwegians defaulting on high-interest consumer loans rising dramatically. Young borrowers figure strongly among the defaults, and lenders are alarmed. “This is a real warning sign,” Anette Willumsen, chief executive of collection agency Lindorff in Oslo, told newspaper Dagens Næringsliv (DN).  Others, including […]

Restaurant tycoon logs some profits

The restaurant business can be brutal in Norway, but a local tycoon in Oslo reported some better results last year. Now he’s embarking on more major projects. Newspaper Dagens Næringsliv (DN) reported that Bjørn Tore Furset, age 47, logged revenues of NOK 363 million (USD 43 million) in 2015, with profits before tax rising to NOK […]

Climate goals full of contradiction

Olje- og energiminister Tord Lien under åpningen av Ekofisk Sør (Ole Berthelsen/OED)

The Norwegian government is once again being accused of presenting contradictory climate goals and even hypocrisy as it unveils plans to cut carbon emissions. While the minister in charge of climate issues is warning of strict and expensive crackdowns on motorists and farmers, his fellow transport- and oil ministers are moving ahead with plans for more oil […]

Analysts warn of risk tied to Statoil’s huge Brazil investment

Norwegian oil analysts claimed that oil prices will need to rise to USD 70-80 a barrel, up from less than USD 45 at present, in order for Statoil to profit on its surprise decision to spend NOK 21 billion on oil fields off Brazil. Statoil, which reported a second-quarter loss last week, bought Brazilian oil […]

Unemployment declined in July

Norwegian state welfare agency NAV has registered another slight deline in unemployment during the past month. The number of residents registered as wholly without work declined by another 500 people. Unemployment declined the most in Østfold county, eastern Norway, and in Sogn og Fjordane in the mountains of central Norway. It rose the most in Rogaland […]

Sveaas donates Stradivarius


Wealthy Norwegian businessman and investor Christen Sveaas is sharing his fortune yet again. Now he’s given away a violin and a cello, both made by the legendary Italian instrument maker Antonio Stradivari in the 17th and 18th centuries. Newspaper Dagens Næringsliv (DN) reported this week that Sveaas, known for being generous, donated the violin and […]

Aker also flexes market muscle

Aker could wave its flags even higher this week from here at its new headquarters at Fornebu outside Oslo, after forcing through what may be the first of many mergers within the troubled offshore sector. PHOTO:

Statoil isn’t the only major Norwegian company flexing its market muscle in a depressed oil and offshore industry. Norwegian tycoon Kjell Inge Røkke’s Aker concern has tapped its own strength to push through what rivals call a “forced marriage” between its Solstad Offshore firm and deeply troubled Rem Offshore, setting the stage for more industry consolidation. Newspaper Dagens […]

Hurtigruten owners poised to profit

The combination of cruises that also call at popular destinations like here at Tromsø also attracts passengers, who can see plenty of spectacular scenery along the way. PHOTO:

The British investment fund that bought up 90 percent of the shares in Norway’s famed coastal shipping line Hurtigruten may see the value of its stake double if it succeeds in finding new buyers. That means the fund’s partners and investors could profit handsomely on a company that received more than NOK 800 million in state subsidy last year […]

Statoil eyes new cuts in North Sea

Statoil CEO Eldar Sætre, shown here visiting an offshore platform himself, remains under pressure to cut more costs. Now the company is studying its offshore staffing, making platform workers nervous. PHOTO: Statoil

Norwegian oil company Statoil will have slashed its costs by around NOK 2.5 billion a year when it wraps up its so-called STEP efficiency program at the end of the year, but it’s not enough. Now the company is turning its attention to its North Sea oil installations, which have been shielded from much of the cost-cutting, and […]