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  Transnational Issues

In general, information available as of 1 January 2002
was used in the preparation of The World Factbook 2002.

This page was last updated on 19 March 2003

Map of Norway

Legend: Definition Definition Field Listing Field Listing
   Introduction    Norway
Definition Field Listing
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 was to last for 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. Norway remained neutral in World War I and proclaimed its neutrality at the outset of World War II. Nevertheless, it was not able to avoid a five-year occupation by Nazi Germany (1940-1945). 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. The current focus is on containing spending on the extensive welfare system and planning for the time when petroleum reserves are depleted. In referenda held in 1972 and 1994, Norway rejected joining the EU.
   Geography    Norway
Definition Field Listing
Northern Europe, bordering the North Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, west of Sweden
Geographic coordinates:
Definition Field Listing
62 00 N, 10 00 E
Map references:
Definition Field Listing
Definition Field Listing
total: 324,220 sq km
land: 307,860 sq km
water: 16,360 sq km
Area - comparative:
Definition Field Listing
slightly larger than New Mexico
Land boundaries:
Definition Field Listing
total: 2,544 km
border countries: Finland 729 km, Sweden 1,619 km, Russia 196 km
Definition Field Listing
21,925 km (includes mainland 3,419 km, large islands 2,413 km, long fjords, numerous small islands, and minor indentations 16,093 km)
Maritime claims:
Definition Field Listing
contiguous zone: 10 NM
territorial sea: 4 NM
continental shelf: 200 NM
exclusive economic zone: 200 NM
Definition Field Listing
temperate along coast, modified by North Atlantic Current; colder interior with increased precipitation and colder summers; rainy year-round on west coast
Definition Field Listing
glaciated; mostly high plateaus and rugged mountains broken by fertile valleys; small, scattered plains; coastline deeply indented by fjords; arctic tundra in north
Elevation extremes:
Definition Field Listing
lowest point: Norwegian Sea 0 m
highest point: Galdhopiggen 2,469 m
Natural resources:
Definition Field Listing
petroleum, copper, natural gas, pyrites, nickel, iron ore, zinc, lead, fish, timber, hydropower
Land use:
Definition Field Listing
arable land: 2.94%
permanent crops: 0%
other: 97.06% (1998 est.)
Irrigated land:
Definition Field Listing
1,270 sq km (1998 est.)
Natural hazards:
Definition Field Listing
rockslides, avalanches
Environment - current issues:
Definition Field Listing
water pollution; acid rain damaging forests and adversely affecting lakes, threatening fish stocks; air pollution from vehicle emissions
Environment - international agreements:
Definition Field Listing
party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulphur 85, Air Pollution-Sulphur 94, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic-Environmental Protocol, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Seals, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 83, Tropical Timber 94, Wetlands, Whaling
signed, but not ratified: Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol
Geography - note:
Definition Field Listing
about two-thirds mountains; some 50,000 islands off its much indented coastline; strategic location adjacent to sea lanes and air routes in North Atlantic; one of most rugged and longest coastlines in world
   People    Norway
Definition Field Listing
4,525,116 (July 2002 est.)
Age structure:
Definition Field Listing
0-14 years: 20% (male 464,789; female 439,117)
15-64 years: 65% (male 1,491,720; female 1,451,450)
65 years and over: 15% (male 281,551; female 396,489) (2002 est.)
Population growth rate:
Definition Field Listing
0.47% (2002 est.)
Birth rate:
Definition Field Listing
12.39 births/1,000 population (2002 est.)
Death rate:
Definition Field Listing
9.78 deaths/1,000 population (2002 est.)
Net migration rate:
Definition Field Listing
2.1 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2002 est.)
Sex ratio:
Definition Field Listing
at birth: 1.07 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.06 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.03 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.71 male(s)/female
total population: 0.98 male(s)/female (2002 est.)
Infant mortality rate:
Definition Field Listing
3.9 deaths/1,000 live births (2002 est.)
Life expectancy at birth:
Definition Field Listing
total population: 78.94 years
female: 82.07 years (2002 est.)
male: 76.01 years
Total fertility rate:
Definition Field Listing
1.8 children born/woman (2002 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate:
Definition Field Listing
NA% (1999 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS:
Definition Field Listing
1,600 (1999 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths:
Definition Field Listing
8 (1999)
Definition Field Listing
noun: Norwegian(s)
adjective: Norwegian
Ethnic groups:
Definition Field Listing
Norwegian, Sami 20,000
Definition Field Listing
Evangelical Lutheran 86% (state church), other Protestant and Roman Catholic 3%, other 1%, none and unknown 10% (1997)
Definition Field Listing
Norwegian (official)
note: small Sami- and Finnish-speaking minorities
Definition Field Listing
definition: age 15 and over can read and write
total population: 100%
male: NA%
female: NA%
   Government    Norway
Country name:
Definition Field Listing
conventional long form: Kingdom of Norway
conventional short form: Norway
local short form: Norge
local long form: Kongeriket Norge
Government type:
Definition Field Listing
constitutional monarchy
Definition Field Listing
Administrative divisions:
Definition Field Listing
19 provinces (fylker, singular - fylke); Akershus, Aust-Agder, Buskerud, Finnmark, Hedmark, Hordaland, More og Romsdal, Nordland, Nord-Trondelag, Oppland, Oslo, Ostfold, Rogaland, Sogn og Fjordane, Sor-Trondelag, Telemark, Troms, Vest-Agder, Vestfold
Dependent areas:
Definition Field Listing
Bouvet Island, Jan Mayen, Svalbard
Definition Field Listing
7 June 1905 Norway declared the union with Sweden dissolved; 26 October 1905 Sweden agreed to the repeal of the union
National holiday:
Definition Field Listing
Constitution Day, 17 May (1814); note - on 14 January 1814 Denmark ceded Norway to Sweden; resisting Swedish domination, Norwegians adopted a new constitution four months later; on 14 August 1814 Norway was proclaimed independent but in union with Sweden; on 7 June 1905 Norway declared the union with Sweden dissolved
Definition Field Listing
17 May 1814, modified in 1884
Legal system:
Definition Field Listing
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
Definition Field Listing
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
Definition Field Listing
chief of state: King HARALD V (since 17 January 1991); Heir Apparent Crown Prince HAAKON MAGNUS, son of the monarch (born 20 July 1973)
head of government: Prime Minister Kjell Magne BONDEVIK (since 19 October 2001)
cabinet: State Council appointed by the monarch with the approval of Parliament
elections: none; the monarch is hereditary; following parliamentary elections, the leader of the majority party or the leader of the majority coalition is usually appointed prime minister by the monarch with the approval of the Parliament
Legislative branch:
Definition Field Listing
modified unicameral Parliament or Storting (165 seats; members are elected by popular vote by proportional representation to serve four-year terms)
elections: last held 10 September 2001 (next to be held NA September 2005)
note: for certain purposes, the Parliament divides itself into two chambers and elects one-fourth of its membership to an upper house or Lagting
election results: percent of vote by party - Labor Party 24.3%, Conservative Party 21.2%, Progress Party 14.6%, Socialist Left Party 12.5%, Christian People's Party 12.4%, Center Party 5.6%, Liberal Party 3.9%, Coastal Party 1.7%, other 3.8%; seats by party - Labor Party 43, Conservative Party 38, Progress Party 26, Socialist Left Party 23, Christian People's Party 22, Center Party 10, Liberal Party 2, Coastal Party 1
Judicial branch:
Definition Field Listing
Supreme Court or Hoyesterett (justices appointed by the monarch)
Political parties and leaders:
Definition Field Listing
Center Party [Odd Roger ENOKSEN]; Christian People's Party [Valgerd Svarstad HAUGLAND]; Coastal Party [Steinar BASTESEN]; Conservative Party [Jan PETERSEN]; Labor Party [Jens STOLTENBERG]; Liberal Party [Lars SPONHEIM]; Progress Party [Carl I. HAGEN]; Socialist Left Party [Kristin HALVORSEN]
Political pressure groups and leaders:
Definition Field Listing
International organization participation:
Definition Field Listing
Diplomatic representation in the US:
Definition Field Listing
chief of mission: Ambassador Knut VOLLEBAEK
chancery: 2720 34th Street NW, Washington, DC 20008
consulate(s) general: Houston, Miami, Minneapolis, New York, and San Francisco
FAX: [1] (202) 337-0870
telephone: [1] (202) 333-6000
Diplomatic representation from the US:
Definition Field Listing
chief of mission: Ambassador John D. ONG
embassy: Drammensveien 18, 0244 Oslo
mailing address: PSC 69, Box 1000, APO AE 09707
telephone: [47] (22) 44 85 50
FAX: [47] (22) 43 07 77
Flag description:
Definition Field Listing
red with a blue cross outlined in white that extends to the edges of the flag; the vertical part of the cross is shifted to the hoist side in the style of the Dannebrog (Danish flag)
   Economy    Norway
Economy - overview:
Definition Field Listing
The Norwegian economy is a prosperous bastion of welfare capitalism, featuring a combination of free market activity and government intervention. The government controls key areas, such as the vital petroleum sector (through large-scale state enterprises). The country is richly endowed with natural resources - petroleum, hydropower, fish, forests, and minerals - and is highly dependent on its oil production and international oil prices; in 1999, oil and gas accounted for 35% of exports. Only Saudi Arabia and Russia export more oil than Norway. Oslo opted to stay out of the EU during a referendum in November 1994. Growth picked up in 2000 to 2.7%, compared with the meager 0.8% of 1999, but fell back to 1.3% in 2001. High oil prices helped the economy in 2002 in face of the sluggish world economy. The government has moved ahead with privatization. With arguably the highest quality of life worldwide, Norwegians still worry about that time in the next two decades when the oil and gas begin to run out. Accordingly, Norway has been saving its oil-boosted budget surpluses in a Government Petroleum Fund, which is invested abroad and now is valued at more than $43 billion.
Definition Field Listing
purchasing power parity - $143 billion (2002 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
Definition Field Listing
1.6% (2002 est.)
GDP - per capita:
Definition Field Listing
purchasing power parity - $31,800 (2002 est.)
GDP - composition by sector:
Definition Field Listing
agriculture: 2%
industry: 31%
services: 67% (2000)
Population below poverty line:
Definition Field Listing
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
Definition Field Listing
lowest 10%: 4%
highest 10%: 22% (1995)
Distribution of family income - Gini index:
Definition Field Listing
26 (1995)
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
Definition Field Listing
1.3% (2001 est.)
Labor force:
Definition Field Listing
2.4 million (2000 est.)
Labor force - by occupation:
Definition Field Listing
services 74%, industry 22%, agriculture, forestry, and fishing 4% (1995)
Unemployment rate:
Definition Field Listing
3.9% (2002 est.)
Definition Field Listing
revenues: $71.7 billion
expenditures: $57.6 billion, including capital expenditures of $NA (2000 est.)
Definition Field Listing
petroleum and gas, food processing, shipbuilding, pulp and paper products, metals, chemicals, timber, mining, textiles, fishing
Industrial production growth rate:
Definition Field Listing
1.2% (2002 est.)
Electricity - production:
Definition Field Listing
141.16 billion kWh (2000)
Electricity - production by source:
Definition Field Listing
fossil fuel: 0%
hydro: 99%
other: 0% (2000)
nuclear: 0%
Electricity - consumption:
Definition Field Listing
112.5 billion kWh (2000)
Electricity - exports:
Definition Field Listing
20.259 billion kWh (2000)
Electricity - imports:
Definition Field Listing
1.474 billion kWh (2000)
Agriculture - products:
Definition Field Listing
barley, wheat, potatoes; pork, beef, veal, milk; fish
Definition Field Listing
$68.2 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)
Exports - commodities:
Definition Field Listing
petroleum and petroleum products, machinery and equipment, metals, chemicals, ships, fish
Exports - partners:
Definition Field Listing
EU 76.8% (UK 19.8%, France 11.8%, Germany 11.6%, Netherlands 10.2%, Sweden 7.9%), US 7.9% (2001)
Definition Field Listing
$37.3 billion f.o.b. (2002 est.)
Imports - commodities:
Definition Field Listing
machinery and equipment, chemicals, metals, foodstuffs
Imports - partners:
Definition Field Listing
EU 66.5% (Sweden 15.5%, Germany 12.8%, UK 7.8%, Denmark 7.2%, France 5.2%), US 7.0% (2001)
Debt - external:
Definition Field Listing
$0 (Norway is a net external creditor)
Economic aid - donor:
Definition Field Listing
ODA, $1.4 billion (1998) (1998)
Definition Field Listing
Norwegian krone (NOK)
Currency code:
Definition Field Listing
Exchange rates:
Definition Field Listing
Norwegian kroner per US dollar - 8.9684 (January 2002), 8.9917 (2001), 8.8018 (2000), 7.7992 (1999), 7.5451 (1998), 7.0734 (1997)
Fiscal year:
Definition Field Listing
calendar year
   Communications    Norway
Telephones - main lines in use:
Definition Field Listing
2.735 million (1998)
Telephones - mobile cellular:
Definition Field Listing
2,080,408 (1998)
Telephone system:
Definition Field Listing
general assessment: modern in all respects; one of the most advanced telecommunications networks in Europe
domestic: Norway has a domestic satellite system; moreover, the prevalence of rural areas encourages the wide use of cellular mobile systems instead of fixed wire systems
international: 2 buried coaxial cable systems; 4 coaxial submarine cables; satellite earth stations - NA Eutelsat, NA Intelsat (Atlantic Ocean), and 1 Inmarsat (Atlantic and Indian Ocean regions); note - Norway shares the Inmarsat earth station with the other Nordic countries (Denmark, Finland, Iceland, and Sweden) (1999)
Radio broadcast stations:
Definition Field Listing
AM 5, FM at least 650, shortwave 1 (1998)
Definition Field Listing
4.03 million (1997)
Television broadcast stations:
Definition Field Listing
360 (plus 2,729 repeaters) (1995)
Definition Field Listing
2.03 million (1997)
Internet country code:
Definition Field Listing
Internet Service Providers (ISPs):
Definition Field Listing
13 (2000)
Internet users:
Definition Field Listing
2.68 million (2002)
   Transportation    Norway
Definition Field Listing
total: 4,006 km
standard gauge: 4,006 km 1.435-m gauge (2,471 km electrified) (2001)
Definition Field Listing
total: 91,180 km
paved: 67,838 km (including 109 km of expressways)
unpaved: 23,342 km (1999)
Definition Field Listing
1,577 km (along west coast)
note: navigable by 2.4 m maximum draft vessels
Definition Field Listing
refined petroleum products 53 km
Ports and harbors:
Definition Field Listing
Bergen, Drammen, Floro, Hammerfest, Harstad, Haugesund, Kristiansand, Larvik, Narvik, Oslo, Porsgrunn, Stavanger, Tromso, Trondheim
Merchant marine:
Definition Field Listing
total: 746 ships (1,000 GRT or over) totaling 20,691,266 GRT/32,126,513 DWT
ships by type: bulk 84, cargo 130, chemical tanker 119, combination bulk 9, combination ore/oil 38, container 18, liquefied gas 91, passenger 6, petroleum tanker 143, refrigerated cargo 9, roll on/roll off 41, short-sea passenger 21, specialized tanker 2, vehicle carrier 35
note: includes some foreign-owned ships registered here as a flag of convenience: Australia 1, Denmark 14, Germany 11, Greece 10, Hong Kong 7, Iceland 2, Japan 11, Lithuania 1, Monaco 42, Poland 1, Saudi Arabia 3, Singapore 10, Sweden 42, Switzerland 2, United Kingdom 4, United States 5 (2002 est.)
Definition Field Listing
102 (2001)
Airports - with paved runways:
Definition Field Listing
total: 66
over 3,047 m: 1
2,438 to 3,047 m: 13
1,524 to 2,437 m: 13
914 to 1,523 m: 14
under 914 m: 26 (2002)
Airports - with unpaved runways:
Definition Field Listing
total: 36
914 to 1,523 m: 7
under 914 m: 29 (2002)
   Military    Norway
Military branches:
Definition Field Listing
Norwegian Army, Royal Norwegian Navy (including Coast Artillery and Coast Guard), Royal Norwegian Air Force, Home Guard
Military manpower - military age:
Definition Field Listing
20 years of age (2002 est.)
Military manpower - availability:
Definition Field Listing
males age 15-49: 1,099,966 (2002 est.)
Military manpower - fit for military service:
Definition Field Listing
males age 15-49: 911,632 (2002 est.)
Military manpower - reaching military age annually:
Definition Field Listing
males: 27,341 (2002 est.)
Military expenditures - dollar figure:
Definition Field Listing
$3.113 billion (FY98/99)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP:
Definition Field Listing
2.13% (2002)
   Transnational Issues    Norway
Disputes - international:
Definition Field Listing
Norway asserts a territorial claim in Antarctica (Queen Maud Land and its continental shelf); despite recent discussions, Russia and Norway continue to dispute their maritime limits in the Barents Sea and Russia's fishing rights beyond Svalbard's territorial limits within the Svalbard Treaty zone

This page was last updated on 19 March 2003

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