That which moves slowly - moves confidently - Norwegian proverb
Each country is interesting in its own way. Especially every European one. "Scanning" the continent from East to West and from South to North, gives a wide range of geographic, climatic, historical, cultural and, of course, economic features and shades. The standard of living in different states of Europe can differ not many times - by orders of magnitude.
From South to North ...
"Way to the North", in Old Norse and in English, sounds about the same - Norðrvegr or Norway.
What have we heard about her? Fjords and glaciers, northern lights and Vikings, Nobel Peace Prize (Oslo), Ibsen's plays and Grieg's music, a-ha group. Many things.
But do you know ... Every (or almost every) country has a famous writer, musician or historical event associated with it. And some were lucky with natural resources. Moreover, someone even very much.
But alas, not every state was able to sensibly take advantage of the chance provided (by nature, God) and build a powerful, socially-oriented economy.
Norway did it. This is what makes it interesting. No less than its stunning landscapes.
So here are the most notable achievements of the Norwegian economic miracle.
In 2016, according to the IMF, Norway occupied a modest 31st place - $ 370 billion in terms of the nominal gross domestic product in 2016. Nigeria, Taiwan, Indonesia, Argentina, Russia and 26 other countries are ahead.
A finer adjustment in the form of GDP in terms of purchasing power (PPP), taking into account the real value of the national currency, gives the 48th place according to the IMF method, in the same 2016 - $ 364 billion. The amount is almost the same, which is not surprising, given the absolute market rate of the Norwegian krone. The Norwegians have very colorful neighbors in terms of GDP by PPP last year: Peruvians are in 47th place, and Ukrainians are in 49th.
But as soon as we pull out the figures for GDP per capita, everything falls into place.
It so happened that there are quite a few Norwegians: 5, 245 million (for 2015), less than half of the population of Moscow.
The International Monetary Fund ranks Norway in 7th place in terms of “individual” GDP (PPP). $ 69249 for one Norwegian and one Norwegian.
In fairness, it should be noted that the population of Qatar is less than 2 million, Luxembourg, Macau - 0.5 million, etc. Only two countries of the top six have a comparable number of people with Norwegian: Kuwait (3.3 million) and Singapore (5.3 million).
Indicators on nominal GDP per capita (*) for the past year are even "steeper". Norway is in third place, $ 70, 392. Luxembourg and Switzerland lead the ranking. Behind even Macau is a special administrative region of the PRC.
Oil and gas production
The main source of prosperity for the Scandinavian country is banal - minerals, primarily hydrocarbons. However, the Norwegians disposed of the wealth that had fallen on their heads very zealous and businesslike.
In the 1960s, Norway decided on the boundaries of the sea shelf, in 1969 the first oil field was discovered in the North Sea and after 1970 large-scale, at the state level, oil and gas production using special drilling platforms began.
The total Norwegian subsea oil reserves are estimated at 18 billion cubic meters. For comparison, the capacity of Russian deposits is over 14 billion tons, the forecast, taking into account future studies, is 63 billion tons (*).
Norwegian oil platform Statfjord (*)
The flagship of the Norwegian oil industry is the state-owned Statoil ASA. In 2002, it goes public, its shares begin to circulate on the Oslo stock exchange. The second most important Norwegian oil company is Norsk Hydro ASA. In 2007, the structures are merged into StatoilHydro (*).
Statoil's revenue for the first quarter of this year amounted to $ 15.528 billion, net operating income - $ 4.25 billion, net profit (after payments of interest on loans and taxation) - $ 1.064 billion (**).
In 2005, revenues from the sale of hydrocarbons allowed Norway to largely abandon external borrowing (*) and form the largest sovereign fund - Norway's global pension fund (see below).
What is the current location of the Kingdom of Norway in the oil and gas production market?
According to OPEC (*), in 2016 Norway ranked 13th in terms of daily production of black gold - 1.615 million barrels. For comparison: Saudi Arabia (1st place) - 10, 46 million, RF (No. 2) - 10, 29 million barrels. The Norwegians are ahead of Nigeria, Algeria, Azerbaijan, Qatar.
Gas. Here Norway is significantly higher in the ranking - seventh place in 2014, with an indicator of 111 billion cubic meters per year, 3, 11% of the world market (OPEC, (*)). Saudi Arabia has the eighth line.
The second (at least notoriously) fishery of the Kingdom.
At the end of 2012 (*), Norwegian seiners and trawlers fished out of the deep sea - 3.6 million tons of fish (12th place). This is incomparably less than that of the numerous and hardworking Chinese (No. 1, 70 million tons) or Indonesians (15, 4 million, No. 2). But the laconic and sluggish Norwegians bypassed the Thais, Koreans, Brazilians and, for example, the Spaniards. And they lagged behind the Russians, who are in ninth place (4.48 million tons).
From natural resources after hydrocarbons, Norway is famous for the deposits and production of aluminum. According to the United States Geological Survey (*), in 2010 the Scandinavians shared the tenth place in the production of this non-ferrous metal with South Africa - 800 thousand tons per year.
Norway is at the forefront of energy technology innovators. First of all, for renewable sources.
Based on the estimates of British Petroleum (*), the country ranked 28th in terms of electricity generation in 2013 - 134.2 thousand GWh (134 TWh). The first line is in China - 5, 649 million GWh, in Western Europe Germany is in the lead - 614 thousand.
Now, about renewability.
In 2008, Norway produced (*) 140 TW (terawatt) hours of energy at hydroelectric power plants (sixth in the ranking). On the first, again, the PRC - 585 TWh hours. Based on the ratios between the Giga and Tera prefixes (1 Tera = 1000 Giga) and comparing the data from 2008 and 2013, it is obvious that Norway is powered mainly by the energy of the falling water. If, of course, the authors of Wikipedia provide reliable information.
Finally, wind energy.
In Norway in general, and with Statoil, in particular, they are well aware that oil will run out sooner or later. In June 2009, the British Air Force announced that Statoil and Siemens AG had installed the first floating wind turbine for commercial use. Turbine power 2, 3 MW (*).
The international non-governmental organization Institute for Social and Economic Development (hereinafter referred to as the Institute), the Institute of Social and Economic Development, published the top ten world sovereign funds in October 2016.
In simple terms, a sovereign fund is a kind of state wallet, where smart governments have been directing surplus from economic activities for many decades. For countries focused on the export of hydrocarbons, to which Norway belongs, super-profits from oil and gas production. These funds are invested in reliable and liquid financial instruments: shares and bonds of the world's leading companies, government bonds, freely convertible currencies, precious metals, real estate.
So, despite the fact that in the ratings given above, the Kingdom of Norway, although it is in the top, but does not take the first or second place, it has formed the world's largest sovereign fund - the Government Pension Fund Global (GPFG), the Global Pension Fund of Norway with volume of $ 882 billion.
The second-ranked Abu Dhabi Sovereign Fund is more than $ 100 billion behind.
All Norwegians should applaud the Royal Ministers.
Citizens of other countries, including the Russian Federation and unhappy Venezuela, who are also very rich in oil, can not even envy (this is stupid), but silently shrug their shoulders, wondering where to get / how to raise / educate such leaders of the country.
GPFG was established relatively recently - in 1990, 60% of assets were invested in stocks, the rest - in government bonds and real estate. At the end of 2012, the Fund is the largest shareholder on the European continent, it owned 1.2% of the authorized capital of all public companies in the developed world (Institute data).
By the way, there are no Russian sovereign funds in the top ten ...
At the end of a short essay on the economy of Norway, a few words about its national currency, the Norwegian krone.
Currency code - NOK. One hundredth (Norwegian cent / kopeck) is an era. The year of introduction is 1874 (*). The exchange rate regime is freely floating.
Of course, the currency pair with the NOK “leg” is somewhat inferior in popularity to the main forex instrument, the euro / dollar, but this fact does not at all prevent traders from actively using the Norwegian krone.
pair NOK / USD, since May 2016
(source - Finam company)
Fluctuations between the maximum and minimum values for the selected period do not exceed 10%.
The Norwegians are slowly (and sometimes not very), but confidently and thoroughly moving forward into their bright future.
There are not many rivals left ahead, almost the whole world is behind.