Editor’s note: This article is part of an ongoing WPR series about workers' rights in various countries around the world.
Norway’s conservative government was re-elected last week, putting it in a position to continue advancing policies aimed at liberalizing segments of the economy, including the labor market. While previous moves by the government to introduce such policies galvanized Norway’s labor unions, they were ultimately unable to sway the broader electorate ahead of this month’s parliamentary elections. In an email interview, Robert Hansen, head of European Affairs at the Norwegian Confederation of Trade Unions, discusses the positions of both the government and the labor unions, how the election will likely affect economic policies going forward, and what, if anything, can be done to achieve a compromise.
WPR: What arguments has the government made for liberalizing the Working Environment Act, which regulates Norway’s labor market, and what has been the reaction and response of organized labor?