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Today in Norway: A roundup of the latest news on Friday 

Today in Norway: A roundup of the latest news on Friday 
Trolltunga, one of Norway's most famous hikes. Photo by Darya Tryfanava on Unsplash
Find out what’s going on in Norway on Friday with The Local’s short roundup of important news.

Health chief warns of fourth Covid wave in Norway  

Bjørn Guldvog, the chief executive and director of the Norwegian Directorate of Health, has warned that Norway could be hit by a fourth coronavirus wave this autumn. 

“There is a real risk of a fourth wave of infection this autumn,” he told newspaper VG.

Guldvog said the wave, which could come as early as August or September, would be driven by the spread of the more contagious Delta variant, first identified in India. 

READ MORE: Delta variant to become dominant in ‘a few weeks’ 

He also added that Norway’s best tool in helping prevent or delay the fourth wave of infection was social distancing and people adhering to current Covid rules. 

“The one-metre rule will help to prevent the fourth wave of infection. It is one of the most important tools we have to prevent a larger wave of infections,” he said. 

Delta variant could delay last step of reopening

The last step of Norway’s reopening plan could be pushed back due to concerns surrounding the Delta variant in the country, Health Minister Bent Høie has said. 

“Next week will mark three weeks since we moved to step three, but with the uncertainty associated with the Delta variant, my priority will be to avoid taking a step back in the reopening plan, rather than taking a step forward,” Høie told VG

READ ALSO: What does the Delta Covid variant mean for Norway’s reopening plan

Høie also warned people that they should be prepared for strict local measures to be introduced at short notice. 

Prime Minister Erna Solberg admitted that the Norwegian government is worried about the Delta variant. 

“We are a little afraid of the Delta variant, which will present a challenge when we have opened the borders as much as we have now, with plenty of Norwegians now travelling in and out of the countries,” she told the paper. 

Three receive compensation for AstraZeneca side effects 

Three claimants have received payment from the Norwegian System of Patient Injury Compensation (NPE) after suffering side effects after taking the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine. 

The claimants are the first people in Norway to have their claims for vaccine side effects upheld in Norway, state broadcaster NRK has reported.

A total of 77 people in Norway have claimed compensation in relation to coronavirus vaccines in Norway, 53 of the claimants received the AstraZeneca vaccine, which was scrapped in May due to concerns over serious side effects

International students can travel to Norway from next month

The government has announced that international students studying in Norway will be exempt from entry restrictions from August 1st. 

“I am happy to be able to welcome students from abroad in August. However, it was important for us to clarify this now so that students can start planning their arrival. Even though we are opening up for them to come in August, they must still follow the rules that apply to quarantine and testing,” Minister of Research and Higher Education Henrik Asheim said in a statement. 

193 new cases of infection registered in Norway 

On Thursday, 193 new cases of Covid-19 infection were registered in Norway, ten more than the seven-day average.

In Oslo, 20 new cases were recorded, nine less than the seven-day average for the capital. 

The R-number or reproduction rate in Norway is currently 0.7. This means that every ten people that are infected will, on average, only infect another seven people, indicating that the infection level is declining.

Total number of Covid-19 cases in Norway. Source. NIPH

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