Europe / Caspian / CIS

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Summary | Profile

Country profile: Norway

Location: Northern Europe, bordering the North Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, west of Sweden
Climate: temperate along coast, modified by North Atlantic Current; colder interior with increased precipitation and colder summers; rainy year-round on west coast
Terrain: glaciated; mostly high plateaus and rugged mountains broken by fertile valleys; small, scattered plains; coastline deeply indented by fjords; arctic tundra in north
Size: 323802 sq. km total (Land area: 307442 sq. km  Water area: 16360 sq.km)
Population: 4,644,457 (July 2008 est.)
Languages: Bokmal Norwegian (official), Nynorsk Norwegian (official), small Sami- and Finnish-speaking minorities; note - Sami is official in six municipalities
Government: constitutional monarchy
Capital city: Oslo
Legal system: mixture of customary law, civil law system, and common law traditions; Supreme Court renders advisory opinions to legislature when asked; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations
Currency: Norwegian krone (NOK)
Licensing:

Country profile

Norway is an advanced, highly-developed economy that has greatly benefited from the utilization of its hydrocarbon resources. In 2005, the country had a gross domestic product (GDP) of $295 billion, and a per-capita GDP of $64,000, which is one of the highest in the world. The Norwegian economy grew by 2.5 percent in 2005, and is forecasted to grow by 2.2 percent in 2006. Norway’s economy is highly dependent on its offshore oil and natural gas sector, which provides the government with its largest single source of revenue and the largest contribution to GDP. In recent years, high oil prices have made for government budget and current account surpluses, and rising disposable income.

Norway's dependence upon oil and gas revenues present long-term challenges for the country, especially because many industry analysts believe that North Sea oil and gas production has already reached or passed its peak. In particular, the country faces pension liabilities and other welfare obligations. In response to these challenges, the Norwegian government created the Petroleum Fund in 1990, later renamed the Government Pension Fund in 2005. A portion of annual oil and gas revenues flow into the Fund each year, which serves the dual purpose of buffering the short-term variations in oil revenues and providing a mechanism to transfer current wealth to future generations. The Fund, which holds a combination of cash, bonds, and shares, holds only international assets and stood at some $240 billion in March 2006.

The latest nationwide election in October 2005 had important repercussions for Norway’s future energy policy, because the largest coalition members (Labour and Socialists) disagree on whether or not to pursue exploration activities in the Barents Sea. In March 2006, the government presented its management plan for the Barents Sea. The plan allows new exploration in some areas of the Barents Sea, but it also places a moratorium on other, ecologically-sensitive parts of the region until 2010. In addition, the plan allows existing exploration activities in the Barents Sea to continue. With declining production from existing areas, Norway must explore these frontier regions in order to maintain oil and natural gas production in the long-term.

Energy production and consumption


Oil Gas
Production: 2 million bbl/day (2005 est.) 83 billion cu m (2005 est.)
Consumption: 228,400 bbl/day (2005 est.) 5 billion cu m (2005 est.)
Exports: 3 million bbl/day (2005 est.) 78 billion cu m (2005 est.)
Imports: 91,930 bbl/day (2005 est.)  
Reserves: 7 billion bbl (1 January 2006 est.) 2 trillion cu m (1 January 2006 est.)
Major fields:



Norway - recent news

18 Sep 20
Norway: Wellesley Petroleum drills dry well north of the Gjøa field in the North Sea - 6204/11-3
Wellesley Petroleum, operator of PL 829, has concluded the drilling of wildcat well 6204/11-3. The well, which was drilled about 75 kms north of the Gjøa field in the North Sea, is being plugged and abandoned as a dry hole.
17 Sep 20
Norway: Equinor awards Wood a contract for the Kollsnes MEG Upgrade project
On behalf of the operator Gassco, Equinor has awarded Wood an engineering, procurement, construction and installation (EPCI) contract for the MEG Upgrade project at Kollsnes.
17 Sep 20
Norway: Wood strengthens foothold in Norway’s onshore energy sector
Wood has secured a new $42m contract from international energy company Equinor on behalf of operator Gassco to provide EPCI (engineering, procurement, construction and installation) services at the Kollsnes gas processing plant in Norway.
17 Sep 20
Norway: Equinor granted drilling permit for well 34/7-37 S in PL 089
The Norwegian Petroleum Directorate has issued a drilling permit to Equinor for wildcat well 34/7-37 S in production licence PL 089. The well will be drilled east of the Statfjord field, directly west of the discovery 34/7-21 Borg.
15 Sep 20
Norway: Axxis Geo Solutions announces new Utsira multi-client late sale
Axxis Geo Solutions has entered into a new multi-client licensing contract with an undisclosed customer. Under the contract, the customer will license certain data from the company's existing Utsira multi-client library in Norway.

Norway - more news

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