Norway owes its current economic prosperity mainly to the oil fields, which were discovered on the Norwegian mainland shield in the years 60. Currently, crude oil extracted from under the seabed of the North Sea brings in revenues of the amount 114 billion Norwegian kroner (i.e. approx. 16% Norwegian Gross Domestic Product).
Fishing is one of the other strongest economies, fish farming, forestry, maritime transport and shipbuilding. Numerous hydropower plants provide energy for the aluminum industry, steel and paper and other branches.
At the end of the 20th century. tourism is beginning to have an increasing share in the country's economy. Despite the high prices, the number of tourists coming to Norway is constantly growing. Thanks to convenient ferry routes, running in summer, Many motorized tourists from Western and Central Europe come here. Cruise ships stop at seaports. Many Europeans go on day or weekend trips to Oslo, Bergen and Stavanger, In winter, skiers go to the mountains and plateaus. At the same time, generous financing and high road user fees make it, that the transport infrastructure - new roads, tunnels, bridges and ferries – keeps getting better.
Although Norwegians have one of the highest national income in the world and one of the most developed infrastructures, they also have to pay some of the highest prices in the world for everything and pay draconian taxes. This is the case, inter alia,. due to strict import restrictions, the high cost of human labor and an extensive welfare system from the cradle to the grave, which enables citizens to e.g.. education at state universities, long holidays, social health service and guaranteed pension.
In many parts of the country, the number of well-paid government officials is greater than the number employed in the private sector. When will be taken into account, that private enterprise must continue to bear the burden of the economy as a whole, it's not hard to understand, that these companies are now approaching the limits of their efficiency. There are legitimate concerns, that any liberalization of trade restrictions, especially joining the European Union, could cause the entire system to collapse.