Disputed au pair program to continue

The Norwegian government has secured a majority in Parliament for its intention to maintain the country’s disputed au pair program. The program has resulted in many young women from the Philippines working as low-paid domestic servants in Norway, instead of functioning as the cultural exchange it was intended to be, and that’s made it a target of strong criticism. Despite […]

New union boss takes command

He’s already being called one of Norway’s most powerful persons: Hans-Christian Gabrielsen is the new leader of the country’s largest trade union confederation LO, responsible for around 900,000 union members in Norway, spread over 25 labour federations. That gives him lots of clout in a country where organized labour has deep traditions and commands respect. Gabrielsen […]

Statoil strategist secures severance

Norwegian oil company Statoil has quietly confirmed that its low-profile executive John Knight will be resigning his post at chief strategist on January 1, 2019. He’ll be taking with him a severance pay package that makes the many others paid out by Statoil, as part of its cost- and staff-cutting in recent years, pale in comparison. Newspaper […]

Kværner wins huge Statoil contract

A contract for upgrading Statoil’s Njord A platform was being formally awarded to the Kværner Stord yard on Norway’s West Coast on Friday. The contract is said to be worth around NOK 5 billion (USD 588 million) and expected to generate as many as 3,000 jobs. “This is one of the most important contracts in the market this […]

Jobs moving out of Oslo, and Norway

Hundreds of public-sector jobs look set to be intentionally moved from the Norwegian capital of Oslo to other locations around the country, and, in the private sector, possibly out of the country. The pending job relocations are generating both outcry and some praise. The most reaction has erupted over the conservative state government coalition’s announcement that it plans […]

Au pair scandal yields jail terms

The Oslo City Court has sentenced a wealthy Norwegian investor and his wife to five months in prison each, in a case that has highlighted abuse of Norway’s au pair program. It’s supposed to serve as a cultural exchange for young people from abroad but the couple, aided by two neighbours, was found guilty of fraudulently and illegally using two young women from the Philippines […]

Mining company allowed to dump in local fjord

Despite protests from the Sami Parliament and several environmental organizations, Norway’s government ministry in charge of climate and environmental issues has allowed a mining company in Northern Norway to operate and dump tailings into a local fjord. Nussir ASA thus won a green light to mine copper at Nussir and Ulveryggen in Kvalsund, Finnmark County. […]

Darker days for Norway’s Statoil

Statoil, hit by a string of serious accidents lately, had to deal with more bad news on Thursday when its third-quarter financial results showed another steep financial decline despite vigorous cost-cutting. State officials’ biggest concern now is to make sure that Statoil’s cost-cutting isn’t cutting into safety as well. Statoil was under pressure on many fronts this week, from regulators, […]

Labour violations found at DNB

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 […]

Statoil eyes new cuts in North Sea

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 […]