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EU plans talks with Panama over offshore accounts

OSLO: The EU will have talks with Panamanian authorities on Wednesday in the wake of the offshore accounts scandal. The meeting comes at the request of Panama’s ambassador. The EU is “very keen to talk to Panama as it is one of the countries that featured on our preliminary list last year of non-compliant tax jurisdictions,” where illicit tax practices ... Read More »

Battery storage for Wind Power energy

OSLO: Offshore Scotland, the Norwegian energy provider Statoil will launch Batwind, a new battery storage solution for offshore wind energy. The new concept will be piloted in the world’s first floating wind farm, the Hywind pilot park off the coast of Peterhead in Aberdeenshire, Scotland. Batwind will be developed in co-operation with Scottish universities and suppliers, under a new Memorandum ... Read More »

Norway opens new Arctic zones to oil exploration

OSLO: Norway awarded Arctic drilling licences to 13 oil companies on Wednesday, including in a hitherto unexplored part of the Barents Sea, drawing condemnation from environmental groups. It is the first time since 1994 that the country has opened a new sector to the oil industry, and comes as Norway’s output has halved since 2000 and as a collapse in ... Read More »

Norway’s greenhouse gas emissions rise by 1.5% in 2015

OSLO: After many years of greenhouse gas reductions, Norway’s emissions rose by 1.5 percent in 2015 due to higher emissions from oil and gas extraction and from industry, the country’s statistics bureau said on Friday. Greenhouse gas emissions from Norway were 53.9 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalents in 2015, an increase of 0.8 million tonnes compared with 2014, according ... Read More »

Norway’s trade surplus falls by 36.4% in 2015

OSLO: Norway’s trade surplus in 2015 decreased by 36.4 percent to 220 billion kroner (26.4 billion U.S. dollars) due to lower exports and increased imports, the country’s statistics bureau said on Thursday. Norway’s exports were 836 billion kroner last year, down about 8 percent from 2014, while imports rose by 9.5 percent to 616 billion kroner, according to final figures ... Read More »

Vietnam, Norway to boost ties

HANOI: Vietnamese Ambassador to Norway Lê Thị Tuyết Mai urged Norwegian businesses to enhance investments in Việt Nam at a conference held by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Trade, Industry and Fisheries and the Vietnamese Embassy in Norway in Oslo, on Monday. The Vietnamese Government is working to improve the business climate to attract foreign investment, intensify ... Read More »

Norwegians have gloomiest financial outlook in decades

OSLO: Norwegians’ confidence in the economy is at a low point not seen since the banking and housing crisis of the early 1990s. Finance Norway’s quarterly expectations survey released here the other day revealed a resoundingly glum outlook. “The main indicator in this quarter is the third lowest ever recorded in the barometer’s history. We have to go back to ... Read More »

Norwegian seafood export jumps by 22% to NOK 21.3 billion in Q1

OSLO: Norway exported seafood worth NOK 21.3 billion in Q1 2016, – an increase of 22 per cent or NOK 3.8 billion compared with Q1 2015. For the month of March alone, seafood exports were worth NOK 7.4 billion. This is an increase of 14 per cent or NOK 937 million compared with March 2015. Salmon exports totalled NOK 13.4 ... Read More »

Norwegian sovereign fund to sue Germany’s Volkswagen over emissions scandal

OSLO: Norway’s sovereign wealth fund will sue the scandal-plagued German automaker Volkswagen (VW) over losses suffered from last year’s emissions scandal, the financial press reported Sunday. The Government Pension Fund Global, one of Norway’s two $870-billion pension funds and managed by Norges Bank Investment Management (NBIM), was reportedly VW’s fourth-largest shareholder. “We have been advised by our lawyers that the ... Read More »

European car sales up

NORWAY: European carmakers recorded the highest sales volumes last month since just before the economic crisis bottomed out the market. The European automakers association ACEA yesterday said that car sales rose 9 percent last month compared with the previous year, for 1.27 million units, the highest volume since April 2008. Volkswagen AG brand sales continued to lag in the wake ... Read More »

Eurozone growth figure may be revised

OSLO: Economic growth across the 19-nation bloc in the first quarter risks being revised lower after official figures showed industrial production fell by a greater-than-anticipated 0.8 percent in March. Eurostat yesterday said the monthly fall was broad-based, with only energy production posting an increase. The decline was more than the 0.2 percent fall predicted in markets and raises a possibility ... Read More »

Norway’s Finance Minister sets out BEPS response

OSLO: Norwegian Finance Minister Siv Jensen has briefed the country’s Parliament on the steps taken by the Government to address base erosion and profit shifting. In her letter submitted to the Parliament on May 4, 2016, Jensen said that Norway has been actively participating in the BEPS project. She added that the Government has submitted to Parliament its preliminary assessment ... Read More »

Norway police sets up Panama Papers hotline for people to confess to tax evasion

OSLO: Norway’s white-collar crimes police unit on Tuesday established a telephone hotline for people seeking to confess to tax evasion linked to the Panama Papers documents leak and said those who come forward could expect more lenient treatment. The initiative was announced one day after the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) released a database containing a small fraction of ... Read More »

Sunday opening laws could get overhaul in Norway

OSLO: Norway’s strict Sunday trading rules could get an overhaul, after supermarket bosses met with the government here the other day. The bosses of Norway’s largest supermarket chains were summoned to meet Culture Minister Linda Hofstad Helleland over accusations that they are flouting the  laws on Sunday opening. Many large supermarkets open on Sundays, despite a law that says stores ... Read More »

Norway to cut corporate, personal tax rates to 23%

OSLO: Norway will cut the corporate income tax rate to 23 percent from the current 27 percent by 2018 and will introduce a tax on financial-services companies in 2017 after lawmakers reached a compromise agreement, the country’s political parties announced here the other day. The basic personal tax rate will also be cut to 23 percent from 27 percent. Personal ... Read More »

Norwegian salmon exports grow strongly in the first quarter

OSLO: Norwegian salmon exports reached a market value of NOK 13.4 billion (USD 1.6 billion) in Q1 this year, representing a 21 per cent growth year on year. However, these exports experienced a 6 per cent decline as to volume, to 227,464 tonnes compared with the first quarter last year. Only in March, these exports were worth NOK 4.9 billion, ... Read More »

EU clears 848,000 tonnes soft wheat export licences this week

OSLO: The European Union granted export licences for 848,000 tonnes of soft wheat this week, taking the total since the beginning of the 2015/16 season on July 1 to 25.9 million tonnes, official data showed on Wednesday. The volume so far this season was down 7 percent compared with the same stage in 2014/15. The EU also awarded licences this ... Read More »

Looming strike could paralyse Norway public services

OSLO: The police, the national tax administration, customs, the Norwegian Labour and Welfare Organization (NAV) and the nation’s universities and colleges are among the orgranizations that could be paralysed if a threatened public strike becomes reality. The danger of a public sector strike was viewed as likely on Monday after three of four labour unions broke off negotiations with the ... Read More »

Norway’s oil fund to take on executive pay controversy

OSLO: Norway’s sovereign wealth fund, the biggest in the world with shares in more than 9,000 companies, will take a closer look at the controversial issue of executive pay, the country’s central bank said on Monday. “It is a theme that we will watch,” Martha Skaar, a spokeswoman for the division of the Norwegian central bank responsible for managing the ... Read More »

EU adopts new prior-surveillance system for steel imports to protect industry

OSLO: The European Union (EU) announced on Friday that it had established a prior-surveillance system for import of steel products into the bloc in order to further protect its own steel industry. Based on the regulation adopted on Friday, imports of steel products into the EU will now need an import license, said the EU’s executive arm the European Commission ... Read More »