Norway flag Norway: Operating a Business in Norway

Work conditions in Norway

The Active Population in Figures

Labour Force 2,799,9582,829,7592,836,708

Source: International Labour Organization, ILOSTAT database

Total activity rate 77.23%77.77%78.17%
Men activity rate 79.24%80.13%80.60%
Women activity rate 75.11%75.27%75.61%

Source: International Labour Organization, ILOSTAT database

Employed Persons, by Occupation (% of Total Labour Force) 2015
Human health and social work activities 19.8%
Wholesale and retail trade; repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles 13.6%
Manufacturing 8.6%
Education 8.6%
Construction 7.8%
Public administration and defence; compulsory social security 6.2%
Professional, scientific and technical activities 5.9%
Transportation and storage 5.5%
Administrative and support service activities 4.2%
Information and communication 3.8%
Accommodation and food service activities 2.9%
Mining and quarrying 2.6%
Arts, entertainment and recreation 2.2%
Financial and insurance activities 2.0%
Agriculture, forestry and fishing 2.0%
Real estate activities 1.0%
Electricity, gas, steam and air conditioning supply 0.6%
Water supply; sewerage, waste management and remediation activities 0.5%
For Further Statistics
Statistics Norway
For Further Information About the Labour Market
International Labor Organisation's (ILO) page on Norway

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Working Conditions

Legal Weekly Duration
35.5 hours for shift workers and 37.5 hours for others. This includes a half an hour lunch break.
Retirement Age
Official retirement age is 67, but early retirement is allowed at 62. Employees have the right to continue working until the age of 70. 
Working Contracts
Legal clauses regulate employment contracts and to a lesser degree collective agreements and individual negotiations. The terms of employment contracts are rather rigid.
Labour Laws
Consult Doing Business Website, to obtain a summary of the labor regulations that apply to local entreprises.

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Cost of Labour

Minimum Wage
No minimum wage exists.
Average Wage
According to the Statistics Norway, in 2021 Norwegians earned NOK 50,790 per year on average.
Social Contributions
Social Security Contributions Paid By Employers: Employer’s social security contributions are due for all employees in both the private and the public sector. The normal rate for the employer is 14.1 percent on gross earnings. The contribution is geographically differentiated according to the municipality where the work-place is.
Social Security Contributions Paid By Employees: An individual working in Norway is subject to Norwegian social security contributions. The employee’s contribution is 8% based on gross wages. This contribution is not required when the salary is less than NOK 64,650 per year.

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Social Partners

Social Dialogue and Involvement of Social Partners
Norway has strong traditions in collective bargaining, and trade unions hold a prominent position. Although the trade union density rate has been decreasing in recent years, more than half of the Norwegian labour force is still collectively organised. Strong emphasis is placed on central organisations of employers and employees. Compulsory collective agreements supplement legislation in wages, working conditions and benefits. Results of central wage negotiations between the large employee's and employer's organisations serve as guidelines for the local wage negotiations.
Labour Unions
The Norwegian Confederation of Trade Unions (LO)
Confederation of Unions for Professionals
Federation of Norwegian Professional Associations
Unionisation Rate
Labour Regulation Bodies
Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs

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Latest Update: March 2023