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

Find out what’s going on in Norway on Friday with The Local’s short roundup of important news.

Sirdal, Norway
Read about the Norwegian Directorate of Health saying that Covid testing for arrivals could be scrapped, children having a better immune response to Covid than adults and more in today's roundup of important news.

Testing at the border may be scrapped

In a weekly report, the Norwegian Directorate of Health said that Covid testing for arrivals into Norway could be scrapped, at least for fully vaccinated travellers with a valid Covid-19 certificate.

“Testing at the border may cease, but it may be considered to continue testing arrivals who can not document with an EU certificate immunity or a negative test in line with the EU Council recommendations,” the Norwegian Directorate of Health wrote in its report.

The report comes a few days before the government is set to reassess and most likely relax the current Covid-19 restrictions.

“Import infection is less important in the current situation,” the Norwegian Directorate of Health said.

Earlier this week the governemnt dropped travel quarantine for all arrivals, regardless of vaccination status. 

Report: Children may have better protection than adults after being infected with Covid-19

A new report from the Norwegian Institute of Public Health has found that children’s immune response to Covid-19 is different to that of adults.

The report states that children have a more efficient and faster immune response and are better at responding to new antigens. In addition, after becoming infected with Covid, children tend to trigger a broad and adaptive immune response that boosts protection against reinfection.

The health institute added that vaccination after Covid infection boosted protection even further.

24,288 new Covid-19 infections 

On Thursday, 24,288 new Covid-19 infections were registered in Norway, that is 7,411 more than the same day a week before.

Thursday’s figure is also 4,936 cases, more than the average of the previous seven days.

In Oslo, 5,164 cases of infection have been reported, 1,359 more than the day before.

Health Minister: People will need to be responsible

Minister of Health Ingvild Kjerkol has said that a relaxation of the Covid-19 rules would come early next week.

“Everyone can prepare for quite a large relaxation. But it is still the cases that we want those that are ill and have symptoms to isolate themselves,” Kjerkol told newspaper VG.

READ MORE: When will Norway lift its remaining Covid-19 measures?

The health minister also said that the responsibility for assessing the infection control situation would move from the state to individuals.

“People must make assessments in the time to come,” Kjerkol said.

“It is about politeness and solidarity to inform friends that you are infected and contagious. Isolating yourself when you are sick is still important,” Kjerkol explained.

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

Fatal traffic accidents, a Covid cash row and projects facing postponements are among the main stories from Norway on Monday. 

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

Several dead after traffic accidents

Four people died, and two were flown to hospital following an accident in the Steigen tunnel, Nordland, north Norway, on Sunday afternoon.

 Another two died in an accident in Voss earlier on Sunday. Four people involved in the collision were sent to hospital. 

“We are at full speed into the season where there are usually more fatal accidents than in other periods of the year,” Cecilie Bryner from Trygg Trafikk, which promotes safe driving, said to newswire NTB. 

37 people have lost their lives on Norwegian roads so far this year. Last year, 87 died in accidents. 

Deadline for agricultural settlement

The deadline for the state and agricultural sector to agree on subsidies and funding is today. 

The farmers demand 11.5 billion kroner from the government, while the state has only offered 10.15 billion. 

The two parties have remained tight-lipped on how close they are to a possible agreement or what’s being negotiated.

This year’s settlement is considered far more complicated than during a typical year. The agreement is supposed to cover farmers’ incomes for 2023 and cover the cost of soaring prices and inflation in 2022, agricultural paper Nationen writes. 

Norway’s municipalities in Covid cash row 

A row has erupted between the government and Norwegian municipalities as funding promised to help cover the bill for Covid to local authorities was not included in the revised national budget for 2022, public broadcaster NRK reports

Several municipalities have hit out at the government as a result. 

Norway’s Minister of Local Government, Sigbjørn Gjelsvik, defended the budget and said there wasn’t a cash flow problem in Norwegian municipalities and that things should “happen in the right order”. 

This opens the door for compensation to be agreed upon after a report on Covid expenditure is published in September. 

READ MORE: What the revised national budget in Norway means for foreigners

Road projects could be pushed back 

Transport Minister Jon-Ivar Nygård has said that less money will be spent on road construction next year and that large national projects could be put on hold or scaled back. 

“We will need to review our priorities because there will probably be less money than planned for transport,” Nygård told newspaper VG

The minister didn’t say which projects were most likely to be put on the backburner, but it was most likely those that were still in the planning and preparation stages.