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Unemployment in Norway Essay

According to the statistics from the Norwegian Labour and Welfare Organization unemployment rate in Norway has gone down from 4. 6 percent in the year 2006 to 2. 5 percent in 2008. The rate of unemployment was falling after along period of stagnation where the unemployed had risen for a period of one decade. The general performance of the economy contributed to this negative trend. This period was preceded with a growth period where the country was enjoying a tremendous growth due to the increased oil prices and a weak Norwegian currency which had made the country exports attractive to the world markets.

The increased demand for the Norwegian exports led to the growth of industries leading to the creation of more employment opportunities. On a month to month basis the unemployment rate was reported to have risen to 1. 8 percent in the month of November 2008 up from 1. 7 percent in the previous year. This downturn was blamed on the current global economic crisis and the general economic performance in Norway. It is estimated that close to one hundred thousand people will loose their jobs by the end of this year.

Unemployment is bound to increase over the next

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few months as the negative effects continue to be felt in Norway and the world at large. One of the factors that have contributed to the poor performance of this country’s economy is the fall in oil prices and the strong currency which has made the country exports expensive in the world market. (International Monetary Fund, 2007) Norway has had a low unemployment rate as compared to other countries in the European Union. Its unemployment rates have had a downturn trend since 2006.

Most of those who are unemployed in Norway are due to various reasons such as sickness, disability or even people decide not to work. Cyclical unemployment is what the country is experiencing right now due to economic downturn. The rise in unemployment though by minimal margin might just be temporarily. There has been an effort by the government to increase the rate of unemployment so that it can stimulate development. This has been done to boost sectors such as construction which has been mostly been affected by shortage of labour.

The unemployment rates in this country is low by the world standards, the country has almost a full employment when compared to the rest parts of the world, mostly the other members of the European Union. The country enjoys the labour provided by migrants from different countries who form the largest percentage of the workers in the oil industry. (OECD 2008) Norwegian oil industry presents high employment opportunities; it is one of the largest industries in the country. The jobs in this sector of economy are available through out the year but the pay is not as attractive as in the other sectors.

The rate of unemployment in this sector is low as compared with the rest of the industries. Oil industry mostly attracts migrant workers especially the less skilled. The native Norwegians are not attracted to most of the jobs that offered by this industry. Tourism industry usually offers seasonal employment in most parts of the world. Norway is not an exception to this trend. Employment in this sector of the economy is also not regular for some people. They are hired when on the peak season and laid down during the off peak season.

Norway has one of the highest Gross Domestic Product in the world. In comparison the country has the lowest unemployment rates in the world. In European Union the country ranks high in terms of employment as it has one of the highest populations which is working. The working class enjoys some of the highest salaries when compared with the rest of the countries in the European Union. (Bell, J. 2000)People here tend to work for less hours on average the numbers of working hours in this country are less than in any other European nation where on average people work for thirty three hours.

The good terms of employment has attracted many people to migrate to this country to work in different field. (Baumol, W 2007)These working conditions range from the wages earned by the workers, they are higher when compared to those offered in some of the country including the United States. The other benefits offered as far as employment is concerned make s the country an attractive destination for many people who are searching for jobs especially those from the central part of Europe.

Its rich resources provide a unique opportunity to create jobs for the natives as well as migrants. (OECD 2004) Unemployment in Norway has reached a level where the government has become concerned prompting it to take action and reverse the trend which was showing some positive trend in the past years. (Solow, R. 2008). The industries which employ the most of the workers will be boosted to continue offering opportunities for the population. Through such effort the country will continue to remain ahead as far as unemployment reduction is concerned.


OECD Employment Outlook, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, OECD Publishing (2008) OECD, Norway, OECD Publishing (2004) Bell, J. Unemployment in Transition, Rotledge (2000) International Monetary Fund, World Economic: A Survey, International Monetary Fund (2007) Baumol, W. Good Capitalism, Bad Capitalism and the Economic Growth and Posterity, Yale University Press (2007) Solow, R. Unemeployment in Europe, MIT Press (2008)

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