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

Robin-Ivan Capar
Robin-Ivan Capar - [email protected]
Today in Norway: A roundup of the latest news on Tuesday
Norwegian authorities plan to abandon the old standard of a 110-kilometer-per-hour speed limit on all new four-lane roads. Photo by Alexandra on Unsplash

Norway to build narrower and slower motorways, an increase in mortgage interest rates, and other news from Norway on Tuesday.

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Norway to build narrower and slower motorways

In an effort to prioritise environmental protection, the Norwegian government has embarked on a plan to construct narrower and slower motorways.

This initiative will mark a departure from the current 110-kilometer-per-hour speed limit on all new four-lane roads.

The rationale behind this shift includes the preservation of nature and arable land while optimising public resource utilisation.

By adopting these measures, the government aims to achieve a more sustainable and cost-effective approach to road infrastructure development.

Nordea and DNB increase mortgage interest rates

In response to Norges Bank's (Norway's central bank) recent increase in the key interest rate on September 21st, Nordea and DNB, two major players in Norway's banking sector, are adjusting their mortgage interest rates.

Nordea has announced an increase in interest rates on mortgages and deposits, with the changes set to take effect from November 27th.

Following the central bank's decision, DNB was the first major bank to raise interest rates on mortgages and deposits by up to 0.25 percentage points.

On Monday, Ingjerd Blekeli Spiten at DNB explained, "Based on Norges Bank's decision to raise the key interest rate by 0.25 percentage points at the interest rate meeting on September 21st, DNB has decided to increase the interest rate on mortgages and deposits by up to 0.25 percentage points."

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Overtourism woes in Geiranger

The village of Geiranger, one of Norway's many tourist magnets, has experienced traffic challenges this summer, with increasing numbers of tourists arriving by buses and cars, leading to traffic congestion and littering.

With the forthcoming zero-emission requirement for tourist ships starting in 2026, even more tourists are expected to visit the destination by road.

On Monday, the municipality, the county, and local businesses sat down for a meeting to brainstorm solutions for the upcoming season.

Proposed measures included introducing parking fees and deploying traffic wardens during the high tourist season. Lofoten, in northern Norway, introduced similar measures this summer. 

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Norway pursues health alliance with EU for enhanced crisis response

In light of the Covid-19 pandemic, Norwegian Health Minister Ingvild Kjerkol wants a closer alliance with the European Union (EU) to secure Norway's place within the EU's health union.

On Tuesday, Kjerkol will meet and Brussels and will advocate Norwegian involvement in European health cooperation.

"This is the most important step we can take to ensure a robust and predictable Norwegian crisis response and to keep the Norwegian population safe," she said.

During her visit to Brussels, Kjerkol plans to hold discussions with EU Health Commissioner Stella Kyriakides.

"We seek an agreement with the EU that guarantees our sustained engagement in European health cooperation and grants us access to vital medical resources, both in times of crisis and beyond. Our aim is to participate on terms as equitable as those of EU member states," Kjerkol said.

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