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

Frazer Norwell
Frazer Norwell - [email protected]
Today in Norway: A roundup of the latest news on Monday
Find out what's going on in Norway with The Local's short roundup of important news. Pictured is a view from western Norway. Photo by Peregrine Photography on Unsplash

Norway to provide Ukraine with energy security, 11 billion kroner needed for railway maintenance, and many people on sick leave. This and other news from Norway on Monday.


Norway to give 1.1 billion to Ukraine for energy security

Norway announced Sunday that it would provide 1.1 billion kroner to help Ukraine repair its energy supply and secure the country's electricity supply.

Norwegian PM Jonas Gahr Støre was among the leaders of 92 countries to meet at a summit in Switzerland to discuss a future path to peace with Russia.

"There is a lot of focus on the support for Ukraine's military defense efforts, but an important part of the Nansen package is to support civilian purposes.

"Repairing the destruction of the electricity supply in Ukraine is something Norway has good expertise in," Støre told Norwegian newswire NTB.

"In some cases, access to electricity can be the difference between life and death," he added.

According to estimates the Norwegian government has received, around half of Ukraine's energy production has been destroyed.

Massive investment needed into rail maintenance in Norway

Some 11 billion kroner is required in order to repair tracks in Norway, according to network rail operator Bane Nor.

"This year's report clearly shows that there must be an investment in upgrading more facilities if the railway is to meet society's expectations and demands for punctuality and reliability," Sverre Kjenne, executive director for digitisation and technology at Bane Nor, said.

At the end of last month, Bane Nor and the Ministry of Transport were criticised for trains in Norway not being punctual enough. Bane Nor pointed to insufficient maintenance resources as one reason for lateness.

Around a fifth of Norway's railway facilities need some kind of maintenance.

Sickness absence still high in Norway

The number of people on sick leave in Norway remains high, with this mainly driven by mental illness, respiratory diseases and "long Covid", Norway's Labour and Welfare Administration (NAV) has said.

The last time sick leave was so high in Norway was in 2004 and 2009.


"Sickness absence has not decreased again as expected after the pandemic, which is serious. This analysis shows that the increase has affected many people and that the reasons are very complex. Now the challenge is to find good solutions and measures," director of employment and welfare Hans Christian Holte.

Sale of soft drinks in Norway continues to rise

The sale of soft drinks in Norway has more than doubled over the past ten years, according to figures from national data agency Statistics Norway.

Beer, wine and spirits sales have also increased by between 10 and 20 percent since 2019.



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