In the end this can entirely kill off growth in the economy: except for that one natural resource that is. Some say Sámi cannot be seen as Norwegian citizens, do not deserve indigenous status and have invented their historic oppression. But to survive in Norway, those of a non-Norwegian culture are expected to adopt a Norwegian world view. And that of course is why there is an oil fund at all. This article was written by Nathan John Albury, research fellow at the University of Oslo, for The Conversation on July 24. I have written for The Times, Daily Telegraph, Express, Independent, City AM, Wall Street Journal, Philadelphia Inquirer and online for the ASI, IEA, Social Affairs Unit, Spectator, The Guardian, The Register and Techcentralstation. The rankings evaluate 73 countries across 24 rankings drawn from a survey of more than 20,000 global citizens, measuring 75 dimensions that have the potential to drive trade, travel and investment and directly affect national economies. The thing to grasp here is the scale of those numbers. Upcoming Webinar: Inside the Best Hospital Rankings », Upcoming Webinar » Inside the Best Hospital Rankings: Nov. 13 | 1:00 - 2:15 p.m. Norway and the United States continue to cooperate closely in the following areas: Defense and Security Cooperation: As NATO allies, the United States and Norway are committed to each other’s defense and partner in critical crisis areas around the world. Nations such as Norway, Finland and Sweden are – to many – not only examples of wealth and well-being but also bastions of social progress and tolerance. Since 2015, Integration Minister Sylvi Listhaug has pursued aggressive restrictions on immigration, particularly for Muslims. In fact, the idea itself is a repudiation of the very idea behind setting up the oil fund in the first place. We are still Puritans at heart. To suggest that all is bad in Norway would be false. Despite all the problems mentioned above, Norwegians still have a high sense of morals. His fear-mongering taps into a dark strain of Norwegian history. Norway's GDP is around the $100 billion mark. A policy of Norweginisation, known as "fornorsking," meant that Sámi children were sent to Norwegian boarding schools, where they were beaten for speaking their native language. Now, it's true that this sort of amount of spending isn't going to cause immediate disaster. Norway's GDP is around the $100 billion mark. That rising exchange rate made other exports more expensive and imports cheaper. (Franz Aberham/Getty Images). This is not thought of as a good thing. So the oil fund is 8 times the entire annual output of the whole country. In another display of discrimination, when Tromsø, the major town of the far north, considered designating itself a Sámi zone, opposing voices were filled with hate. You may opt-out by. The Sámi were also denied the right to purchase property if they could not speak Norwegian. For progressives around the world, it has become almost a pastime to romanticise the quasi-socialist Scandinavian countries. Best Countries is a rankings, news and analysis project created to capture how countries are perceived on a global scale. It's just too tempting to go spend the money. It's not so much the stimulus, it's the currency effect that's the problem. The analysis shows that Norwegians argue that the Sámi threaten the purity of Norwegian ethnicity and way of life. Norway, in particular, consistently leads the world in quality of life and happiness, and the country is responding compassionately to the Syrian refugee crisis, unlike its many critics in Europe. Opinions expressed by Forbes Contributors are their own. In addition there are several dialects which can be hard to understand if you're not used to it. Because if that money had been flowing into the domestic economy over the decades the Norwegian currency would now by sky high and it's doubtful if there would be any other economic activity in the country at all, other than oil and gas. So the oil fund is 8 times the entire annual output of the whole country. While popular and even academic writing in Norway describes immigrants from the Middle East as speaking "kebab Norwegian," my 2016 analysis of online comments to Sámi-themed news found a similarly pervasive prejudice. Stay informed daily on the latest news and advice on COVID-19 from the editors at U.S. News & World Report. An odd thing to be but someone does have to be such and in this flavour of our universe I am. After the the 2011 mass shooting by Anders Breivik, which he carried out in the name of rejecting a "Muslim colonization" of Europe, Norway emerged determined to defy xenophobia. And that of course is why there is an oil fund at all. As recently as 1977, the Norwegian government forcibly sterilized members of its Romani minority population. The budget stimulus is equal to 0.7 percentage point. Opponents even fired bullets at bilingual signs to express displeasure. But it does presage problems for the future. EY & Citi On The Importance Of Resilience And Innovation, Impact 50: Investors Seeking Profit — And Pushing For Change. And in contrast to most European countries, Norway extends full social support and protections to all asylees while they await a ruling. But in the end I fear all such attempts will run into the same problem we're seeing here. Still, Norway's far-right Progress Party – to which Breivik belonged in his youth and which holds 29 seats in parliament – has fought to roll back migration and benefits. Since 2016, the U.S. has experienced the greatest drop in global confidence, while Canada continues to be seen as the most trusted. That's the whole point of the fund, to stop that happening: that is, to stop the oil money being spent in the Norwegian domestic economy. It is republished with permission. But is life in Norway really so great? Such policies also echo Norway's treatment of its indigenous population, which I have been studying. But this is what Norway is risking: Norway predicts it will for the first time need to withdraw cash from its $820 billion sovereign wealth fund as western Europe’s biggest oil exporter uses a record chunk of its petroleum revenue to cover budget holes and stimulate the economy. And they're not doing it in a small manner either: The government is using the cash to boost growth. That implies a withdrawal from the fund of 3.7 billion kroner, after an inflow of 38 billion kroner this year. From Switzerland to Singapore: Scenes from nations examined in U.S. News' Best Countries report. In 2015, during the height of the European refugee crisis, the country, which has a population of 5.2 million, considered some 31,000 asylum cases, a national record. Next time someone extols the virtues of this "perfect" Scandinavian society, remind them that the Norwegian dream is not available to all. I'm a Fellow at the Adam Smith Institute in London, a writer here and there on this and that and strangely, one of the global experts on the metal scandium, one of the rare earths. This racist undercurrent in Norway may derive from an American-style exceptionalism in Norway, whereby Norwegians are told and truly believe that they are world leaders in social policy. The Conversation is a nonprofit news organization bringing knowledge from academia to the ... Read more, Tags: Norway, Europe, immigration, refugees, world news. Once the political classes have got wind of a pot of money they can spend then they will go and pillage that pot. As an Australian who worked in Oslo for three years, I found that while freedom, tolerance and happiness are indeed important values there, you can expect to enjoy them only if you're Norwegian. Upcoming Webinar: Inside the Best Hospital Rankings, Inside the Best Hospital Rankings: Nov. 13 | 1:00 - 2:15 p.m. Apart from the things already mentioned I would say: Language: The Norwegian language itself can be difficult to learn for foreigners. An oil drilling platform in Tromsø, Norway. I, too, have been thankful for Norway's affordable health care and generous leave entitlements. In 1999, Statoil was roughly estimated to be worth about 120 billion Norwegian kroner but it may be more highly valued in the future if international oil prices remain higher than the level they were at in 1999. Image Credits: V. Belov/shutterstock.com Norway’s emissions of gree… By spending part of the oil fund on current spending within the country Norway risks doing terrible long term damage to that economy.