Integration high on Høyre’s agenda

The Conservatives' annual party meeting this weekend has attracted more than 1,000 delegates, a new record. Prime Minister Erna Solberg stressed the party's motto, Muligheter for alle (Opportunities for everyone) in her opening speech Friday by stressing the need for integration of immigrants, asylum seekers and newcomers in Norway. PHOTO: Høyre

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

Prime Minister Erna Solberg meeting some of  the newly arrived refugees who crossed the border into Norway from Russia late last year. The numbers of Norwegians who think her government is doing a good job in tackling the refugee crisis has increased. PHOTO: Statsministerens kontor

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

Norwegian artist Gustav Wentzel's  painting "Utvandrere" from 1903 has become an iconic illustration of the mass emgration of Norwegians to the US. Today the emigration numbers are higher, but mostly made up of immigrants to Norway who end up moving on. PHOTO: Wikipedia

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

Lots of expatriate oil industry workers in Norway now face the tough and lonely job of finding new work, or having to move back home. PHOTO: Statoil/Øyvind Hagen

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 […]

Foreign workers told to go home

Laid-up vessels that once served the now beleaguered oil industry provide a sharp contrast to the expensive residential projects built in Stavanger during the boom years. Now a local politician for the Progress Party is telling unemployed foreign workers to go back home. PHOTO: Berglund

For years, Norway’s oil capital of Stavanger needed and welcomed engineers and other oil industry workers from other countries. Now, with the boom years over and companies slashing jobs, a former mayoral candidate from the conservative Progress Party has a message for unemployed foreign workers: “Go home.” Christian Wedler, who lost his party’s bid for the […]

The secrets of the ‘Christmas calendar’

The Norwegian Christmas calendar, called "julekalenderen," is a cherished Norwegian tradition in many homes. Every calendar has 24 gifts for the 24 days before Christmas. PHOTO: Axel Johnson

EXPATRIATE MUSINGS: Axel Johnson is a relatively recent arrival in Oslo, from Sweden. Although many expatriates in Norway may lump the Scandinavian countries together, they have many different customs and, not least, holiday traditions. Johnson has learned a lot the past few weeks about one Norwegian tradition that’s become increasingly elaborate in recent years: the local […]

Alarms ring over refugee children

At least 43 unaccompanied refugee children have gone missing from various asylum centers in Norway this year alone, and 25 have died since 2006. Several of those missing were as young as nine years old, and the numbers of refugee children in Norway are now increasing dramatically. Around 4,000 refugee children are currently living in asylum centers in Norway. Alone and […]

Frp can put its grip on immigration

Sylvi Listhaug often wears a gold cross around her neck, like here when she was named as Norway's new Immigration Minister in December. She, and many of her fellow Progress Party members, are deeply skeptical towards immigrants and asylum seekers from Muslim countries, and her proposals to tighten immigration policy are meeting new opposition. PHOTO: Sylvi Listhaug

UPDATED: Sylvi Listhaug of Norway’s most immigration-critical party (Fremskrittspartiet, Frp) will now take over as the country’s first-ever government minister in charge of asylum, immigration and integration issues. It’s arguably the most important of several ministerial changes announced by Prime Minister Erna Solberg on Wednesday, leaving Listhaug able to put Frp’s mark on immigration policy, possibly for years to […]

More face charges in fire at planned asylum center

A man in his mid-30s who’s originally from Eastern Europe is among two suspects now charged with setting fire to a hotel in Western Norway that was supposed to start housing underage asylum seekers. Police on Monday weren’t ruling out more arrests in what they claim was arson. The fire at the hotel building in […]