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

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

Norwegian Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Stoere speaks in Oslo Cathedral on January 9, 2022.
Photo: Håkon Mosvold Larsen / NTB / AFP)

Norway eases Covid-19 restrictions

The government announced that it has decided to scrap the 11pm ban on selling alcohol for bars and restaurants alongside most other existing coronavirus restrictions, during a press conference on Tuesday evening

Working from home is no longer required, and travellers from abroad will no longer have to get tested on the Norwegian border. The self isolation time for those who test positive for Covid-19 is reduced from six to four days.

.. though some rules remain in place

In addition to the rule requiring people to wear a face mask in public places were it is impossible to maintain a 1m distance, the 1m distancing rule remains in place in restaurants, bars and nightclubs. That means activities like dancing continue to be banned.

“There won’t be a dancing police,” Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre (Labour) told VG smilingly.

However bar and nightclub owners are far from satisfied.

“It will hold back sales and it will be impossible to open a number of places,” regional director for the Norwegian Trade Organisation (NHO), Trond Lien, told NRK.

Norwegians want to retire earlier 

Workers in their 50s and 60s now wish to retire on average two years earlier than before the pandemic, according to a study by researchers at the Ipsos Centre for Senior Politics.

“There is no doubt that people now want to stop working at an increasingly younger age,” Kari Østerud, Director at the Senior Politics Centre, told E24.

From August 2019 to October 2021, the desired retirement age fell from 66,6 to 64,7 years among employees over the age of 50, according to their findings.

Norway’s retirement age is 67.

23,237 new Covid-19 cases 

A total of 23,237 new coronavirus cases were registered in Norway in the latest daily update. 

Tuesday’s number represented a drop of 1,182 cases compared to the average for the preceding week. However a change in the testing system means fewer cases are likely to be registered than under the old system.

267 people with Covid-19 were inpatients at Norwegian hospitals on Tuesday, 10 more than the previous day. The number of ICU patients dropped slightly, from 51 to 47.

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

A shortage of GP’s, Oslo making it more expensive to own an electric car and Norway asking the EU to be exempt from a new rule are among the main stories on Friday.

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

Report: 150,000 without a GP

Last year, the number of people without a GP in Norway grew once again, according to the Norwegian Directorate of Health’s annual report on the fastlege system.

“The low recruitment growth and the increasing reduction in total capacity in the GP scheme underline the seriousness of the situation. We share the concern of GPs that the scheme is under great pressure,” Bjørn Guldvog, health director at the Norwegian Directorate of Health said.

The health directorate’s report found 150,000 were without a GP last year. 

Only 3 out of 100 medical students and newly qualified doctors in Norway have said that they think they will work as a GP, broadcaster TV2 reports.

READ MORE: How to register with a doctor in Norway

Hiker in Troms flow to hospital after fall

A hiker in her 20s was flown to hospital after a fall from the mountain Mjeldskartinden in the Troms region of northern Norway.

“It is a matter of a tour group of two people, where one person has fallen from the mountain as the snow shovel at the top breaks. The other person, who called the police, estimates that the injured person has fallen a couple of hundred meters,” Eirik Kileng from the local police district told newspaper VG.

The woman was flown to the University of Northern Norway Hospital by an air ambulance. Despite the reported fall of a few hundred metres, the patient is said to be in a stable condition with moderate injuries.

Norway to ask EU for exemption from egg rule

The Norwegian Ministry of Health will ask to be exempt from a new EU directive that will reduce the shelf life of eggs from 35 to 28 days, according to agricultural outlet Bondebladet.

The reason for the new rule is that parts of Europe are struggling with a salmonella infection.

Several figures from the agriculture sector have said that the new rule would led to increased transport costs and threaten the viability of egg production in remote parts of the country.

Oslo Municipality raises prices for charging electric cars

In its revised budget for the year, Oslo Municipality said it would raise the price for using municipal car chargers.

Currently it costs between 12 to 17 kroner per hour to park and charge a electric car between 9am and 8pm, and 7 kroner outside these times.

Parking will be raised to between 18 and 23 kroner between the day and 13 kroner at night.

READ ALSO: Norway to remove VAT exemption for electric cars