The recession has hit oil rich Norway, long after the global finance crisis sent many other countries' economies into a slump, the government agency Statistics Norway said Tuesday. The country is now in a recession, defined as a shrinking of the national economy two quarters in a row. The agency said a 0.8 percent decline in gross domestic product in the fourth quarter was followed by a 1% decline in the first quarter.
The government's use of Norway's vast oil wealth has helped cushion the impact of economic upheaval in the Nordic country, where unemployment remained a low 2.8% last month but was rising fast. It also noted a decline in traditional exports, which exclude oil, of 7.3% in the first quarter. Counting oil, the decline was 4.7%. Imports also fell 5.9% from the fourth to the first quarter.