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Norway: much more than environmental actions and the sovereign wealth fund that profited US$213 billion in 2023.

Today is Friday, February 2, 2024.

Quite a lot is heard worldwide about Norway’s Sovereign Wealth Fund, such as frequent donations to the Amazon Fund, both past and recent.

The fund’s formal name is the Government Pension Fund Global. It ensures “a long-term management of revenue from Norway’s oil and gas resources, so that this wealth benefits both current and future generations”. Click here to see its amazing value. It does not stop to increase.

As of 30 January 2024, its market value was 15,765 billion kroner (around US$1.6 trillion). That corresponds to $273,000 for every inhabitant of Norway, which has a population of 5.5 million.

That was the day of the annual results 2023 press conference. Here are the slides, with really impressive figures:

The largest annual return in its history, 2.22 trillion kroner, equivalent to US$213 billion. Yes, billion US dollars. One year profit.

Here are some highlights from Norway since 2021.

  • Article “Will Norway pull the plug on itself?” by Zero Media. Oil represents more than 40% of Norway's exports, employing around 200,000 people directly, around 7% of that country's workforce. And the "golden egg" Fund mentioned above actually supports the country's pensions - unlike other Nordic countries, through very high taxation.

  • Article “How oil and gas extraction undermines the climate policies of rich nations” from Energy Monitor. Several interesting graphics about gas and oil exploration, including via fracturing. It focuses on Norway, England, United States and Canada, questioning whether strategies for exploiting these natural assets would be in line with their position on environmental issues. Data from various sources - such as GlobalData, IEA, BP and World Energy Council among others - indicate that these countries will continue to extract billions of barrels of oil after 2070, 80, 90

  • Article “Waking the Norwegian Green Giant” from Project Syndicate: “As one of the world's leading exporters of natural gas, Norway faces a unique challenge in a world that is increasingly moving away from fossil fuels. The country has all the financial, technological, and human resources it needs to thrive in a decarbonized future; what's missing is policy leadership.”

  • Norges Bank Investment Management, responsible for managing the fund, receives a serious warning in a report commissioned by the government. According to it, the analysis of climate risks on the portfolio that makes up the fund needs to be greatly improved. The report raises two major questions: Would emission reduction targets be adequate for the speed of climate change observed? Are large wealth funds and fund managers adequately “factoring in” ESG risks in their portfolios? Here is the original report (in Norwegian).

Analysing country developments like this gives an interesting perspective not only about the needs / reasons but also on the direction being taken.


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“Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood. Now is the time to understand more, so that we may fear less.”

“I am among those who think that science has great beauty”

Madame Marie Curie (1867 - 1934) Chemist & physicist. French, born Polish.

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