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Working in Norway: A weekly roundup of the latest jobs news and talking points

Working in Norway: A weekly roundup of the latest jobs news and talking points
Here's this week's roundup of working life. Photo by Mario Gogh on Unsplash
Every week The Local brings you a roundup of the latest jobs news and talking points related to working life in Norway. This week we're looking at election promises and what they mean for you, an increase in jobs and the results of last week's poll.

Conservatives pledge to create more private-sector jobs

As part of its seven election promises, the Conservative Party has pledged to increase the number of private-sector jobs in Norway should they get re-elected. 

The majority of foreign residents working in Norway are employed in the private sector, so more jobs in this sphere should come as welcome news if Solberg can make good on the promise. 

One of the strategies the Conservatives will employ to ensure more jobs in the private sector is to scrap a wealth tax on working capital. You can read about the wealth tax here in last week’s roundup and why salmon baron and Norway’s sixth richest man, Gustav Witzøe, is opposed to it. 

READ ALSO: What Erna Solberg’s seven election promises mean for foreign residents in Norway

Labour promises to cut the number of part-time jobs

Labour has pledged, if it is elected, to cut the number of part-time jobs in Norway and ensure that more people are entitled to full-time and permanent positions. 

“We must change the legislation so it is clearer that you are entitled to a full and permanent position,” party secretary Kjersti Stenseng told VG earlier this week. 

There are 500,000 part-time workers in Norway. Many of them work more than one part-time job. 

Under the Labour pledge, it will be down to employers to prove why a part-time position is more relevant to the employee than a permanent full-time one. 

Just under half think they are more effective working from home than in the office

A survey carried out by the Norwegian Property Association has revealed that almost half of the respondents, regardless of age, think they concentrate better while working from home. 

Additionally, 75 percent said that their creativity and their interaction with colleagues has decreased. Half also said that they believe professional development had deteriorated.

Number of new jobs increases 

In the last two months, the number of jobs in Norway has increased by just over 45,000, according to figures from Statistics Norway.

Overall, jobs are up 2.2 percent in the second quarter of 2021 compared to the same time last year. 

The rise comes after four months of job losses from January through till May.  

Accommodation and catering saw the most significant increase in the number of new jobs. From May to June, 15,000 new jobs were created in this sector. However, despite the rise in jobs, the industry is still to return to pre-pandemic levels. There are still 24 percent fewer jobs in the sector compared to June 2019. 

Poll: Should foreigners in Norway join a union? 

The answer, according to those who responded to the survey, is a resounding yes. 

A smidge under 80 percent of all people who answered the poll on Twitter said that foreign workers should join a union, while just over 20 percent said they shouldn’t. 

Those who responded to the survey in the article were even more encouraging to the idea of foreign workers joining a union in Norway. 

Just over 88 percent of those who responded to the survey said foreign workers should join a union, while 11.8 percent said they shouldn’t. 

One reader who responded to the survey shared their experience of joining a union in Norway and how it benefited them. 

“I had received one pay rise in 6 years before joining a union, which nowhere near covered inflation. Every time I asked, the company blamed various factors. Since I joined a union this year, they have negotiated two pay rises on my behalf fair to inflation,” The user who preferred to remain anonymous said.

Foreign workers in Norway have the same rights to join a union as Norwegian workers. To join a union, you must pay your tax-deductible dues. 

In Norway, trade union federations come to national collective agreements with employers in many industries as there is no minimum wage. This is one of the ways a fair salary is ensured despite there being no minimum wage. 

Did you know? 

Tax returns in Norway are public. It’s true. How much you make for the year and how much you pay in taxes is open information for the public to find out. Norway brings transparency to a new level when it comes to personal finances.

Sverre Solberg, general manager at Trondheim co-working space Work-Work, explained the reasoning for this to Forbes, saying, “as a social democracy, we don’t want there to be a huge gap between the rich and the poor. An open tax return policy shows everyone how big that gap is, making it easier to discuss and address.”

For more on this read: Five things foreigners should know about income tax in Norway

Useful links

Below you’ll find a couple of helpful articles, guides and resources put together by The Local, which cover key aspects of working life in Norway.

Taxes in Norway: Everything you need to know about how much tax people pay

Do you really need to speak Norwegian to work in Norway?

Is this useful?

Please get in touch with me at [email protected] to let me know if this weekly feature is useful and any suggestions you have for jobs related articles on The Local Norway.

Jobs in Norway

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