Country: General Statistics

Other Country Profiles


Business and economic environment in Norway

  • Not a member of EU
  • Extremely successful oil and gas industry from which 78% (28% corporate and 50% industry surtax) is taxed and accumulates in $640 billion sovereign wealth account
  • Largest budget surplus among all advanced democracies
  • No net national debt
  • Unemployment below 3%
  • Overall tax as a share of GDP is one of the highest in OECD
  • Tax for corporations 4x as high as U.S. rate
  • Extremely transparently run businesses
  • 3rd in Gallup's Global Happiness Survey
  • Highest per capita income in 2009
  • Highest tax rates kick in at $124,000 at 47.8%
  • Free education from nursury to graduate school, including schools outside of Norway
  • 46 weeks of maternity leave with full pay; 10 weeks for father
  • Low unemployment and generous unemployment benefits make for considerable employee leverage

U.S. Comparison

  • Also leader in oil and gas industry, but prefers Exxon and BP to enjoy vast majority of benefit
  • Raising taxes is almost forbidden as an option as a debt solution
  • U.S. has many potential entrepreneurs, but is behind Norway, Denmark, Switzerland, and Canada when it comes to start up activity
  • About 25% of U.S. entrepreneurs are entrepreneurs out of necessity compared to 9% for Norway, the 3rd lowest in the world
  • Education, retirement, and medical expenses are 3 major concerns in the U.S. that are provided by the government in Norway
  • From 2006-2009 U.S. economy grows .1%; Norway 3%
  • Regulations are fairly uniform and stable in Norway; whereas in the U.S. things can change in any moment in any one of the 50 states

Norway dispels tax myths and excels at promoting entrepreneurship

  • High taxes do not push businesses out of country; they stay in Norway
  • Start-ups thrive; Norway ranks among highest for advanced democracies
  • High tax rates have done little to deter or impair Norwegian entrepreneurs
  • More entrepreneurs per capita than U.S.
  • Enconomy continues to grow with high taxes; most businesses do not see high taxes as a significant burden but as an exchange for services

Abstracted from Mark Provost's US fiscal debate could learn from Norway, Progressive Press, February 8th, 2013, and January 20th 2011 by Max Chafkin's In Norway, start ups say Ja to socialism, Inc. Magazine, January 20th, 2011.