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TODAY IN NORWAY

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

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

A cabin in Norway.
Read about the latest news from Norway in today's roundup of important news. Pictured is a cabin. Photo by Rune Haugseng on Unsplash

NHO temper wage growth expectations 

The Confederation of Norwegian Enterprise (NHO) has tempered expectations over salary rises in this year’s wage negotiations.

“The wage settlement this year must strengthen the companies. We must keep in mind that many of the increased costs that households have incurred have also affected companies,” Ole Erik Almlid, NHO CEO, told public broadcaster NRK.

Unions and employer organisations are on a collision course for this year’s settlements. This is because unions have argued that sharp wage increases are required to offset the cost of living rises. In contrast, businesses say that rising prices and interest rates also affect their overheads.

Weather warning issued for southern Norway

A weather warning has been issued for precipitation in southern Norway. Buskerud, Oslo, Akershus, Oppland are expecting up to 25 millimetres of precipitation.

In Finnmark, northern Norway, a warning has been issued for snowdrifts.

On Monday, traffic problems caused by the weather was reported in several areas.

Norwegians increasingly concerned about rising costs

Electricity prices and increased interest rates mean Norwegians are less optimistic about the economy than they have been in previous quarters, finance firm Finans Norge’s expectation barometer for the first quarter revealed.

The barometer measures Norwegian households expectations of their own personal financial situation and the larger economy.

Those on the lowest incomes were the ones to see the most significant increase in concern.

Sharp increase in sexual offences being reported

In 2021 the number of reported sexual offences rose by 16.5 percent. The police have said they are particularly concerned about crimes involving children and young people.

In total, 8,006 offences were reported to Norwegian police, compared to 6,874 in 2020, figures from the Norwegian Police Directorate and reported by news agency NTB have revealed.

“The growth we are seeing in this area, the police are concerned. Children and young people are increasingly using social media to share and sell self-produced sexualised material. In recent years, there has been an increase in the number of actors who pay minors for sexualised images,” John-Magnus Løkenflaen from the police directorate said in a statement.

The police also said it saw an increase in the number of rapes reported.

Norway plans to tighten electric scooter rules

The government has sent a proposal on stricter rules for the use of e-scooters for consultation.

The government is proposing a ban on the use of electric scooters on pavements and the loss of the right to drive when caught using a scooter under the influence.

The goal is for the new rules to come into force in the spring.

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TODAY IN NORWAY

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.

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