Sigrun Vågeng, director of work and welfare at the Norwegian Labour and Welfare Administration. Photo: NAV
Sigrun Vågeng, the agency's director of work and welfare, described the shift from 65,000 registered unemployed on March 10 to 291,000 unemployed on Tuesday as “unparalleled in history”.
“This is the highest unemployment rate in Norway since World War II,” she said in a press release. “This past week we have seen a doubling of the number registered as full-time unemployed. The main reason for this is a sharp increase in the number of layoffs as a result of the measures implemented to limit the spread of coronavirus.”
According to the agency, Møre and Romsdal had seen the sharpest increase in unemployment over the past week, with a 116 percent increase, while Vestland had seen the slowest increase at 84 percent.
The unemployment rate is currently highest in Oslo, with 12.7 percent of the workforce registered as without work.
A full quarter of people working in the tourism and transport industries are now unemployed, while a fifth of those in retail and sales are now without work.
Teachers have the lowest level of unemployment, with only 2.5 percent of the workforce registered as unemployed.