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Norway is known as a beautiful and peaceful country with fantastic standards of living. It can be a lovely place to live or visit, but it still has a dark history. A history not many know or discuss.
In this SWOT analysis of Norway, you’ll learn about the common strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats that have affected the country over the last decade. As well as how the future of Norway is expected to look.
Strengths: A beautiful country with a political system the people approve of
A politically stable country.
One of Norway’s greatest strengths is that it’s a peaceful country with a stable political system. The people haven’t overtly opposed any political parties, nor has there been a problem with political corruption. Rather, Norwegians seem to be content with the way the country is run. With such a high standard of living, this isn’t too surprising.
A safe place to live or visit.
Norway has one of the lowest crime rates of any country. You won’t find any national disputes. The crime rate could be low because of the low unemployment rate, many business opportunities, and the flourishing economy.
Strong economic growth.
Political and economic stability go hand-in-hand. Norway has both. The country is a hidden gem for tech employees and employers — both are looking to move into Norway’s booming technology sector. But in general, the country is known for having great business contracts, an affinity for new business growth, and fair trades with other countries.
As a beautiful country, it attracts tourists.
Norway is one of the most atmospheric countries in the world. The water is crystal clear and the air is fresh. The greenery is vast and vibrant. In the distance, you’ll likely find mountain tops or picturesque glaciers. In most places, any outdoor photos you take will look so perfect, some may assume it’s photoshopped.
A dedication to protecting the land.
Norway knows its country is beautiful and wishes to retain that beauty by cutting gas emissions. The country has made a big promise — to fully cut gas emissions and become a “carbon neutral” by 2050. The expectation is that emissions will be cut by 40% in the next 10 years. Following through with these promises will be helpful for the planet, and may lead to more growth in the renewable energy industries.
Weaknesses: Limited economic streams and pricey living conditions
Despite Norway having a strong economy, it’s mostly because of two industries: oil and gas. The country is one of the frontiers for hydroelectric energy, aluminum, and petroleum. Right now, this is beneficial — although most countries still use fossil fuels, more countries are moving towards natural energy resources.
But Norway’s weakness is its lack of economic diversity. If these markets crash, Norway’s people would suffer. The gas and oil industries bring in the most revenue and value to the government and finances the welfare of Norwegians. So long as these markets are thriving, Norwegians have nothing to worry about. But if they’re not, the country doesn’t have a concrete backup plan right now.
Expensive place to live.
Norway is expensive. There’s even a saying, “everything you need is cheap, but everything you want? That’s expensive.” For instance, buying food in Norway is more expensive than most other European countries. It can be so expensive that Norwegians tend to go to their neighbor, Sweden, to pick up candies, alcohol, and tobacco.
Opportunities: Breaking into new industries and expanding technology sectors
New industries and avenues.
Since Norway depends on oil and gas to maintain the economy, it should also lean on other industries as a backup. The reason being, Norway has a higher standard of living compared to many other countries. The people have grown to expect certain conditions — like five weeks of vacation as workers. Things like this require a strong and stable economy. Focusing on growth and providing resources into other industries will be beneficial for everyone in the country.
Tech growth is on the rise.
Norway is a desired hub for tech companies and employees. This may be surprising since most people think Silicon Valley and New York when talking about tech startups. But that’s what makes Norway such a hidden gem.
Workers are entitled to healthcare, parental leave (for mothers and fathers) and five weeks of paid vacation. These are luxuries that many American workers don’t have.
Norway has also proven itself to be a hotspot for B2B corporations and a supply of top tier software engineering talent. More tech industries, like cybersecurity and the Internet of Things (IoT), are growing in Norway too. Not only will they need even more talent, it means companies in other countries see the opportunity to expand to Norway’s lush pastures too.
Threats: A quiet history of terrorism and worry about data
Despite being known as a land of peace and tranquility, Norway does have a history with violent rightwing extremism. In 2011, a 21-year old Norwegian opened fire in a mosque after being “inspired” by a previous attack. While the president acknowledges the attacks of terrorism, some worry that words won’t be enough to protect the people.
China and Russia’s data collection obsession.
As for security, the biggest threats to Norway are China and Russia. Both countries are focused on the collection of data and details of not only their own citizens, but of Americans and Norwegians too. China has strong capabilities to gather online data. China also has its hand in popular apps like TikTok, which millions of people use each month. Norwegians need to be diligent in their security procedures to protect its data.
Norway is a stable country — it’s economy is strong and the political parties in power show little signs (if any) of corruption. Although the country is quite expensive to live, most workers are paid a salary to manage the high costs. Plus, workers get universal healthcare and weeks of vacation — something that many American tech workers are eying up. More companies are building or expanding tech ventures in Norway to capitalize on it’s new but growing tech sectors.
Read also: PESTLE analysis of Norway
Image by Tommy Andreassen