Norway is a country with a low population but an very high standard of living – the population of less than 5 million share an average GDP of $79,00 per person – making Norway the third highest in the world (after Luxembourg and Bermuda).
Norway also tops the Economist Human Development Index.
Norway’s prosperity is due, in no small part, to its large oil deposits (discovered in the 1960’s) which have helped the country develop a very large Sovereign Wealth Fund and maintain a high quality social system and infrastructure.
Although traditional industries such as timber and fisheries are still important, Norway has developed thriving industrial and service sectors which are able to draw on the services of a highly educated workforce and now has major companies operating in many niche hi-tech fields.
Staunchly independent, Norway has stayed out of, not only the Euro but also the European Union and there seems little appetite in the country to move towards a greater degree of unity with their European neighbours – they seem to be doing very well on their own.