Dual citizenship momentum grows

Momentum is building in Norway to finally end the country’s ban on dual citizenship, with two activists working hard to convince state politicians that it promotes democracy and integration. Immigration Minister Sylvi Listhaug is non-committal, saying only that her ministry is currently “evaluating” the issue. “It’s too early to say,” Listhaug said Thursday, what her ministry […]

Listhaug taps Labour veteran to lead integration

Norway’s tough-talking Immigration Minister Sylvi Listhaug of the conservative Progress Party has made an unusual choice in naming Labour Party veteran Libe Rieber-Mohn as new director of the state directorate for integration and diversity (IMDi). The two parties are usually at odds on most issues, but Rieber-Mohn was quick to point out that her new […]

Greens party backs dual citizenship

Norway’s small but potentially powerful Greens party (Miljøpartiet De Grønne, MDG) decided during its national board meeting over the weekend to support rising calls to allow dual citizenship in the country. Norway has long been one of the few countries in the world that doesn’t allow dual citizenship, forcing new immigrants to decide whether they’re […]

Language lacking in integration plans

Immigration Minister Sylvi Listhaug could enjoy some support even among opposition politicians on Thursday after rolling out her 69 proposals for better integration of asylum seekers in Norway. Her plans for language training, however, were widely branded as inadequate even though she has stressed the need for newcomers to learn to speak and understand Norwegian quickly. With the […]

Extra funding granted for integration

Immigration Minister Sylvi Listhaug announced Friday that the government was earmarking another NOK 320 million (USD 40 million) to help finance settlement and integration of refugees in local communities. Around 16,000 new refugees need to be settled around the country this year alone. “This is very good news and recognizes the good job the communities have […]

Integration high on Høyre’s agenda

Norway’s Conservative Party (Høyre) had dozens of major issues to debate at its annual national meeting this weekend, but among the most pressing and current was integration. Prime Minister Erna Solberg made it clear in her opening speech on Friday that if the party is to live up to its motto of “‘opportunities for everyone,’ […]

Fewer Norwegians hail immigration

A new survey shows that the numbers of Norwegians who think immigration is good for the country have fallen markedly during the past year. More are now skeptical, believed to be a result of last year’s refugee influx just as the country’s once-booming economy shifted into reverse. A lot has happened in just one year, noted […]

Emigration also hits a new record

Record numbers of asylum seekers and other immigrants arrived in Norway last year, but tens of thousands left the country as well. Never before have so many people emigrated from Norway, according to new figures from state statistics bureau SSB (Statistics Norway).  Norway is known for mass emigration in the 1800s and early 1900s, with most of those leaving heading […]

‘Power play’ linked to refugee drama

The ongoing drama in Norway’s northernmost region, over suspended expulsions of unsuccessful asylum seekers from Russia, has been linked to an alleged Russian power play. Two Oslo researchers suggest Russia is using Norway to expose Europe’s failure to control the refugee influx from the Middle East and Africa. The claims come after Russia forced Norway to […]

Repatriation: The rocky road home

SPECIAL FEATURE: Tougher economic times in Norway, brought on by the fall in oil prices, mean many expatriates in the country are now dealing with job losses or reassignments that can involve moving back to their home countries. Repatriation can be just as challenging as moving abroad was, notes clinical psychologist Nicola McCaffrey, who offers the following professional advice for coping […]