Tuesday, November 02, 2004

Avoiding the Oil Curse

Via a friend in Boston, a flattering report about Norway (my home country) and the way it manages its oil revenues:
In Norway, the sudden increase in oil prices has meant larger inflows to the fund and enhanced long-term welfare for its citizens. That's not how it goes down in other big oil producing countries. In Russia, the oil boom has enriched oligarchs and increased foreign currency reserves. But the quality of life in Russia continues to deteriorate. Saudi Arabia has been pumping far more oil than Norway and for a far longer time. But its oil revenues tend to flow into the bank accounts of the royal family—not into a segregated account to benefit the public at large.
As a Norwegian I am obviously hopelessly biased here, but you'd think the English-speaking media would take an even greater interest in Scandinavia. More US - Scandi comparisons here.

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