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Two centuries of Viking raids into Europe tapered off following the adoption of Christianity by King Olav TRYGGVASON in 994. Conversion of the Norwegian kingdom occurred over the next several decades. In 1397, Norway was absorbed into a union with Denmark that lasted more than four centuries. In 1814, Norwegians resisted the cession of their country to Sweden and adopted a new constitution. Sweden then invaded Norway but agreed to let Norway keep its constitution in return for accepting the union under a Swedish king. Rising nationalism throughout the 19th century led to a 1905 referendum granting Norway independence. Although Norway remained neutral in World War I, it suffered heavy losses to its shipping. Norway proclaimed its neutrality at the outset of World War II, but was nonetheless occupied for five years by Nazi Germany (1940-45). In 1949, neutrality was abandoned and Norway became a member of NATO. Discovery of oil and gas in adjacent waters in the late 1960s boosted Norway's economic fortunes. In referenda held in 1972 and 1994, Norway rejected joining the EU. Key domestic issues include immigration and integration of ethnic minorities, maintaining the country's extensive social safety net with an aging population, and preserving economic competitiveness.


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Economy

Economy - overview
The Norwegian economy is a prosperous mixed economy, with a vibrant private sector, a large state sector and an extensive social safety net. The government controls key areas, such as the vital petroleum sector, through extensive regulation and large-scale state-majority-owned enterprises. The country is richly endowed with natural resources - petroleum, hydropower, fish, forests, and minerals - and is highly dependent on the petroleum sector, which accounts for the largest portion of export revenue and about 20% of government revenue. Norway is the world's second-largest gas exporter; and seventh largest oil exporter, making one of its largest offshore oil finds in 2011. Norway opted to stay out of the EU during a referendum in November 1994; nonetheless, as a member of the European Economic Area, it contributes sizably to the EU budget. In anticipation of eventual declines in oil and gas production, Norway saves state revenue from the petroleum sector in the world's second largest sovereign wealth fund, valued at over $500 billion in 2011 and uses the fund's return to help finance public expenses. After solid GDP growth in 2004-07, the economy slowed in 2008, and contracted in 2009, before returning to positive growth in 2010-11, however, the government budget is set to remain in surplus.

Gdp (purchasing power parity) World Ranking: 48
$269.3 billion (2011 est.)
$264.8 billion (2010 est.)
$263.1 billion (2009 est.)
Note Data are in 2011 US dollars

Gdp (official exchange rate)
$483.7 billion (2011 est.)

Gdp - real growth rate World Ranking: 161
1.7% (2011 est.)
0.7% (2010 est.)
-1.7% (2009 est.)

Gdp - per capita (ppp) World Ranking: 8
$54,200 (2011 est.)
$54,000 (2010 est.)
$54,300 (2009 est.)
Note Data are in 2011 US dollars

Gdp - composition by sector
Agriculture 2.6%
Industry 39.7%
Services 57.7% (2011 est.)

Labor force World Ranking: 108
2.629 million (2011 est.)

Labor force - by occupation
Agriculture 2.9%
Industry 21.1%
Services 76% (2008)

Unemployment rate World Ranking: 29
3.3% (2011 est.)
3.6% (2010 est.)

Population below poverty line
NA%

Household income or consumption by percentage share
Lowest 10% 3.9%
Highest 10% 21% (2008)

Distribution of family income - gini index World Ranking: 132
25 (2008)
25.8 (1995)

Investment (gross fixed) World Ranking: 92
20.3% of GDP (2011 est.)

Budget
Revenues $280.5 billion
Expenditures $209.5 billion (2011 est.)

Taxes and other revenues World Ranking: 11
58% of GDP (2011 est.)

Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-) World Ranking: 5
14.7% of GDP (2011 est.)

Public debt World Ranking: 44
57.5% of GDP (2011 est.)
43.7% of GDP (2010 est.)
Note
Data cover general government debt, and includes debt instruments issued (or owned) by government entities other than the treasury; the data exclude treasury debt held by foreign entities; the data exclude debt issued by subnational entities, as well as intra-governmental debt; intra-governmental debt consists of treasury borrowings from surpluses in the social funds, such as for retirement, medical care, and unemployment. Debt instruments for the social funds are not sold at public auctions.

Inflation rate (consumer prices) World Ranking: 13
1.3% (2011 est.)
2.4% (2010 est.)

Central bank discount rate World Ranking: 117
6.25% (31 December 2010 est.)
1.75% (31 December 2009 est.)

Commercial bank prime lending rate World Ranking: 160
5% (31 December 2011 est.)
4.6% (31 December 2010 est.)

Stock of narrow money World Ranking: 24
$137.4 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
$134.6 billion (31 December 2010 est.)

Stock of broad money World Ranking: 33
$309.2 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
$280.4 billion (31 December 2010 est.)

Stock of domestic credit World Ranking: 22
$658.6 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
$584.4 billion (31 December 2010 est.)

Market value of publicly traded shares World Ranking: 31
$219.2 billion (31 December 2011)
$250.9 billion (31 December 2010)
$227.2 billion (31 December 2009)

Agriculture - products
Barley, wheat, potatoes; pork, beef, veal, milk; fish

Industries
Petroleum and gas, food processing, shipbuilding, pulp and paper products, metals, chemicals, timber, mining, textiles, fishing

Industrial production growth rate World Ranking: 159
-4.3% (2011 est.)

Electricity - production World Ranking: 25
129.9 billion kWh (2009 est.)

Electricity - consumption World Ranking: 27
115.6 billion kWh (2008 est.)

Electricity - exports
14.63 billion kWh (2009 est.)

Electricity - imports
8.983 billion kWh (2009 est.)

Oil - production World Ranking: 15
2.134 million bbl/day (2010 est.)

Oil - consumption World Ranking: 52
221,300 bbl/day (2010 est.)

Oil - exports World Ranking: 6
2.184 million bbl/day (2009 est.)

Oil - imports World Ranking: 59
118,200 bbl/day (2009 est.)

Oil - proved reserves World Ranking: 23
5.67 billion bbl (1 January 2010 est.)

Natural gas - production World Ranking: 7
106.3 billion cu m (2010 est.)

Natural gas - consumption World Ranking: 54
6.6 billion cu m (2010 est.)

Natural gas - exports World Ranking: 2
99.75 billion cu m (2010 est.)

Natural gas - imports World Ranking: 107
0 cu m (2010 est.)

Natural gas - proved reserves World Ranking: 18
2.039 trillion cu m (1 January 2011 est.)

Current account balance World Ranking: 9
$70.2 billion (2011 est.)
$51.44 billion (2010 est.)

Exports World Ranking: 31
$162.4 billion (2011 est.)
$132.7 billion (2010 est.)

Exports - commodities
Petroleum and petroleum products, machinery and equipment, metals, chemicals, ships, fish

Exports - partners
UK 27.2%, Netherlands 11.6%, Germany 11.1%, France 7.2%, Sweden 6.5%, US 5.6% (2011)

Imports World Ranking: 37
$88.47 billion (2011 est.)
$74.3 billion (2010 est.)

Imports - commodities
Machinery and equipment, chemicals, metals, foodstuffs

Imports - partners
Sweden 13.4%, Germany 12%, China 9%, Denmark 6.3%, UK 5.6%, US 5.4%, Netherlands 4.2% (2011)

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold World Ranking: 35
$49.27 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
$52.8 billion (31 December 2010 est.)

Debt - external World Ranking: 20
$644.5 billion (30 June 2011)
$NA (30 June 2010)
Note
Norway is a net external creditor

Stock of direct foreign investment - at home World Ranking: 24
$182.5 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
$171.8 billion (31 December 2010 est.)

Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad World Ranking: 22
$182 billion (31 December 2011 est.)
$170.5 billion (31 December 2010 est.)

Exchange rates
Norwegian kroner (NOK) per US dollar -
5.6046 (2011 est.)
6.0442 (2010 est.)
6.288 (2009)
5.6361 (2008)
5.86 (2007)

Fiscal year
Calendar year


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  Norway (Oslo):


  GPS points from Norway (Oslo)

Vassenden Aust-agder

Gravtjern Telemark Fylke

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