Norwegian Economy

Stop in here to find some interesting facts on the Norwegians economy. Oil Rig/Oljeplattform (in Norwegian above)

Norway seem to be holding "its own" in the economic arena, with only a slight down-turn in spite of the turbulence during the negative financial picture around the world today. This nation's economy is not running in "the red", in fact, they have a surplus. Why could that be?

Fight for Survival
Could the answer possibly be found in reflecting on the history of this seafaring nation? Could it be that these innovative, adventurous hard working folks of this Nordic land, all the way back to ancient times, learned to fight for survival and won at last?

Their ancestors never had a life of ease in this cold, mountainous region of the world, they had to use both brain and brawn to survive.

Meager Harvest
Rarely did the small farms produce enough grain to feed their families. With tremendous difficulties on the rocky bareness of what was tillable land coupled with an extremely short growing season, with meager harvest most of the time.

Tree Bark
They could not mill all the harvested grain into flour as they also had to leave enough seeds for the next year's planting. This meant they would grind tree bark (don't try it) and mix it in with the flour to have enough to feed their families. History tells us that this flour made many ill.

In the past, the Norwegian people had to prepare long in advance for surviving their long, cold, hard winters. However, even with tasking, laborious work and good plans, the weather often did not cooperate to produce adequate harvest to supply for their needs. In spite of the very short growing season these hardy Norwegians somehow survived and thrived in spite of it.

Fishing and the Sea
Naturally, the abundance of fish and seafood always have played a big part for Norway's survival. Norway's borders meet salt water on three sides - so a seafaring people they are and fishing for large and small seafood still is and were a big part of their economy.

Preservation of Foods
To keep fish from spoiling, before refrigeration was invented and before salt became available, drying fish and meats was the first method of preservation. Later salt became the major factor in preservation of their meats and fish, but in certain cases they also continued the drying method after these foods were salted. However, in those ancient times salt was an expensive commodity and not necessarily available in this Nordic land. Also, they salted, cured and/or dried meats, especially lamb, for later use.

World War 11
The Second World War didn't make life easy for the Norwegians as well as for most of Europe. It left a deep mark on these hardy, tough people of this small country.

Norway was an occupied nation for long, five years. As a result, food, shelter, medicine and clothing was very scares during these terrible years in Norway, as well as in the rest of occupied Europe. This shortage for the necessities for life lasted long after the war ended. It took years and arduous persistence to recover and rebuild after that horrific and painful war.

Perhaps, learning to endure and survive through numerous hard times, trials and tribulations, coupled with their innate love and loyalty for their country, the Norwegians are a tenacious, tough, thrifty and innovative people. They are usually good planners, making good use of things at hand; being frugal and wise spenders; hard working and last, but not least, a giving and charitable nation.

A Charitable Nation
When international disasters occur, this little country, only 4.5 million strong, are one of the first nations on the scene with food, medicine, clothing, monies and workers. Per capita, the Norwegian people are close to the top in supplying aid around the world.

Personally, I believe, giving is the main criteria for any country or persons to obtain wealth. However, that is my belief, not a world-wide known fact. Never-the-less, generous giving seem to have been proven to be multiplied back to the giver in most instances, time and time again.

Income and Industry
The Norwegian per capita income ranks among the world's highest. North Sea oil and gas fields are one of the cornerstones of the Norwegian economy.

Other major industries upon which Norway relies on are pulp and paper, forestry, mining, manufacturing and shipping.

With an overwhelming resource of water, hydroelectric power is produced and exported to neighboring European countries.

Traditionally, however, the country's economy also rely on the large fishing industry with about 90 percent of it's catch exported. Whaling, of course, has been a major industry for hundreds of years. Now, whaling, a subject of controversy, has resumed despite an international ban.

Fish farming is a growth sector, with government assistance, and Norway is the world's leading producer and exporter of salmon.

Educational system and Living Standard
This country's excellent economy has resulted in a high living standard for the Norwegian population with a corresponding superb educational system.

Daily Life
As the positive economic picture is reflected in the daily lives of the people. Many Norwegian house wives enjoys unusual conveniences in their homes, such as walk-in refrigerators, along with their regular refrigerators in their kitchens, as well as all other modern conveniences.

Some properties have heated sidewalks and drive ways – and of course, that's very nice, since Norway, as I am sure you know, usually have plenty of snow in the winter.

In addition to owning their homes, they often have cabins/hytter or vacation homes somewhere in the mountains, by the sea or a lake for get-a-ways. Many Norwegian go to their vacation spots every week end.

Norway's positive economy, have given the Norwegians, with an ancient love for travel and explorations, the means to travel. It is fabulous to have at least 3 weeks or more of summer vacation along with many holidays through-out the year where they have time to take off to foreign lands. You will probably run into these "Norwegian Vikings" anywhere you are on this globe.

Return to Norway Facts after Economy