In April, The Norwegian Government Pension Fund Global announces its best ever quarterly return of 5.3%. Now sitting at well over $900 billion, it’s the fruit of some very progressive thinking all the way back in 1969, with production getting underway two years later. Here’s a nice timeline of events detailing the evolution of what is possibly Norway’s best ever idea. The Fund itself came into existence in 1990.
It is the people’s money, owned by everyone, divided equally and for generations to come.
Sounds good, doesn’t it? Even better is their commitment to ethical investment and workers’ rights, being subject to a strict Responsible Investment policy. So why haven’t other oil producing nations taken Norway’s lead and secured their respective futures for generations to come?
In a thought-provoking piece titled What Canada and Alberta could learn from Norway, Canadian business leader Leonard Schein discussed this very idea, highlighting a vast ideological difference between the Norwegian and Canadian view on resources;
While Norway claims ownership over oil in its land, Canada assumes that any oil in the ground belongs to the companies that extract it.
The statistics below are quiet intriguing and would make one wonder whether Canada has ever considered adopting the Norwegian model.