‘Solid’ Norwegian wage growth predicted in 2022

Pictured are people working in an office.
Wages could rise above inflation next year. Pictured are people hard at work in an office. Photo by Ant Rozetsky on Unsplash
A solid economy and labour shortages in many industries means workers in Norway can look forward to an increase in wages next year. 

Workers in Norway can expect to see a sizeable bump to the figure on their wage slip next year, DNB Markets, one of the country’s largest investment banks, has predicted. The bank said that it expected wages to increase by 3.8 percent in the next year.

“We believe that there will be a solid rise in wage growth next year, and if we are right, there will be an increase of half a percentage point compared to the wage growth we have seen this year,” Kjersti Haugland, chief economist for DNB Markets, told public broadcaster NRK.

According to the broadcaster, most economists believe wages will increase beyond the 3 percent mark in 2022.

DNB Markets estimates that despite high inflation in 2021, next year should see inflation of around 2.6 percent. Typically wages only rise as high as inflation, but several factors could lead to wage growth surpassing price rises.

This is due to factors including a strong economy and many industries entering wage settlement negotiations in the new year while simultaneously experiencing a shortage of personnel, Haugland said .

“The bargaining position of the employees will then be strong,” she said.

Norway’s workforce is heavily unionised, and unions play a prominent role in working life in the country. The country doesn’t have a minimum wage. Instead, wages are negotiated through collective agreements between unions and industry organisations.

READ MORE: Why Norway doesn’t have a national minimum wage and how fair pay is ensured

Peggy Hessen Følsvik, head of the Norwegian Confederation of Trade Unions (LO), said that she expects wages to increase next year but tempered expectations somewhat.

“We won’t negotiate ourselves out of the factory door (with unreasonable demands), so we must make sure that we have a wage development that means other countries around us do not out-compete us,” she told NRK.

“If we can stick to that responsibility, our members must also get their share of the profits that are created in the business world,” Følsvik added.

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