From oil boom to bust: Norway’s economic divide –

Norway’s economy risks becoming flooded by oil more than four decades after it was discovered off the country’s southwestern coast in 1969.

Average manufacturing labour costs are about $57.50 an hour, 31 per cent more than in Germany and 65 per cent more than the United States, according to the U.S. Labor Department.

Complicating life for exporters, Norway’s krone has surged 24 per cent against a basket of currencies from its trading partners in the past 3.5 years as investors seek an oil-rich haven from the global financial crisis.

That’s making it hard for companies outside the oil industry to evolve and thrive even as the economy expands amid a contraction in the euro area.

For anyone who has visited the wealthy country, you can understand how the high labour costs and standard of living can make it difficult to be competitive in the manufacturing industry.

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