Norway loses a seafarers’ hero

Jon Michelet was a journalist, newspaper editor, local politican, labour activist, TV anchor and, most of all, a best-selling author who won lots of awards. Many Norwegians  were thus mourning his death from cancer during the weeknd, but heartened that he’d managed to keep writing to the bitter end. That meant that he also managed […]

Series wins two prizes in Cannes

NRK’s new drama series about how the oil industry changed Norway won two prizes when it debuted this week at the new International Series Festival in Cannes. Its cast and producers were celebrating. The series, called Lykkeland/State of Happiness, was one of 10 series chosen from 130 entries to be shown at the festival in […]

Oil industry drama debuts in Cannes

A new dramatic version of how Norway’s oil industry began was making its debut on Tuesday at the first Cannes International Series Festival. The new Norwegian series is the biggest TV drama ever produced in Norway, based on events that also changed the nation forever. Called Lykkeland (State of Happiness for its foreign audience), the series starts […]

Hurtigruten gets new coastal rival

Norway’s famed coastal shipping route will be shared by two operators from 2021, as part of a move by the state transport ministry to stimulate competition. The venerable shipping line Hurtigruten will be joined by newcomer Havila Kystruten AS, with each operating seven and four ships respectively on the subsidized 11-day round-trip routes with daily […]

Kirkenes welcomes new train line from Finland

“This is a big day,” the mayor in Norway’s northern city of Kirkenes, Rune Rafaelsen, proclaimed after transport authorities in Finland said they want to move forward with plans for cargo train service between Rovaniemi and Kirkenes. They view Kirkenes as the best potential port for ongoing shipping routes through the Northeast Passage between Europe […]

Hurtigruten bails out its shipyard

Norway’s coastal voyage company Hurtigruten AS and the investors behind it have helped recapitalize the Kleven Verft shipyard in Ulsteinvik, collectively providing NOK 300 million in fresh capital. The company currently has ultra-modern hybrid vessels on order at the yard, and neither Hurtigruten nor its owners wanted to risk any delivery delays or additional costs. […]

Hurtigruten fights for its name, routes

UPDATED: Billed as the world’s most beautiful voyage, ships in the line known as Hurtigruten have plied Norway’s scenic coastline since 1893. Now the state, under pressure from EU competition authorities, intends to break up the 11-day round-trip routes running continually between Bergen and Kirkenes into three “packages” that would be open to bidding from […]

Maritime heritage alive in Farsund

PHOTO FEATURE: Long before offshore oil and gas made Norway one of the world’s wealthiest countries, its maritime heritage and huge fleet of ships all but ruled the waves. Much of that heritage can be experienced in the small, southern coastal town of Farsund, far from Norway’s bigger cities but nonetheless internationally oriented and once an economic hub. It […]

Business pioneer dead at 66

Wilhelm Blystad and his younger brother Arne shook up Norwegian business like no others had done before, with their raid on large shipowning firm Kosmos in the mid-1980s and daring ventures into other major, often risky, investments. The death of Wilhelm Blystad last month brought back memories of the Yuppie (called japp) age in Norway, and […]

Ferry fire survivors disappointed again

One of the passengers who survived a fire onboard the car-and passenger ferry Scandinavian Star 27 years ago was among those disappointed again by the latest report on the blaze that killed 159 others. It concluded that there was no evidence of sabotage or arson that was economically motivated. The report by a commission appointed by […]