Little property tax relief in state budget

Even though Norway’s conservative government coalition opposes property tax, it didn’t do anything to prevent local governments from imposing it in the state budget. There is a proposal, however, to keep it from rising too quickly. Residents of Oslo, for example, are getting hit with much higher property tax bills than expected because of higher […]

Critics blast lack of Oil Fund ‘buffers’

Norway’s huge sovereign wealth fund known as the “Oil Fund” is far too vulnerable to swings in the financial markets, argue critics. They claim a lack of buffers to reduce the impact of swings that can cut into market value is a glaring omission on the part of the state government responsible for the fund. […]

Conservatives still lead polls

As the Conservative and Progress parties defend their state budget proposal for next year, they can gain encouragement from the latest public opinion polls that show them with majority support from voters. The Conservatives gained again in the poll conducted by research firm Opinion for newspaper group ANB. It showed the Conservatives (Høyre) with 26.7 […]

Triumphant Siv strides ahead

NEWS ANALYSIS: Warnings of an “autumn storm” breaking out in the Norwegian Parliament this week were premature. After a roughly 18-hour workday that began before dawn on Norway’s annual “Budget Day,” Finance Minister Siv Jensen could relish a surprisingly good reception to the state budget proposal for 2018 that she’d presented and defended until late […]

Jensen presents a ‘budget for growth’

Transport, defense, health and education emerged as the winners in what commentators described as the government’s “neutral” state budget for 2018. Finance Minister Siv Jensen, confident after helping to steer Norway through its biggest economic crisis in years, described it as a “secure and future-oriented” budget that will prod more economic growth. “The government has […]

New ‘Tesla tax’ gears up the opposition

After promising that electric cars would retain all their tax advantages in the new state budget, the Norwegian government has charged up opposition over a reported proposal to impose a new one-time tax that seems tailor-made for those buying popular, high-end Teslas. One of the government’s own former support parties, which it still needs to […]

Minister resists oiling the budget

Finance Minister Siv Jensen has long been a proponent of investing more of Norway’s oil wealth at home, and dipping into it in times of trouble. Now, after branding the Norwegian economy as healthy once again, even she’s warning that the government won’t literally be oiling their proposed state budget by nearly as much next […]

Parliament leaders ‘broke own rules’

Olemic Thommessen, president of the Norwegian Parliament and therefore second only to the monarch as head of state, has come under another torrent of criticism over the Parliament’s troubled and expensive expansion project. He’s fending the criticism off once again, and ignoring any calls for his resignation. The project involves construction of a new entrance tunnel to the […]

Oil price collapse ‘is now behind us’

An optimistic Norwegian government presented a revised state budget on Thursday that proposes few changes in the annual budget for 2017 that was approved in December. That’s because the economic program laid out in the budget is working well, according to Finance Minister Siv Jensen. “Unemployment is on its way down and economic growth is on its […]

More drama at the Norwegian Opera

Norway’s Opera House in Oslo has become a national landmark, but sour notes are sounding once again inside the state-funded building that houses both the Norwegian Opera & Ballet. Soloists have demanded an urgent meeting with the Parliament’s committee on cultural affairs, while a revolt tunes up against the Opera’s new top administrator even before she starts […]