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A welfare state funded by nature and OPEC. A guided tour on Norway's path from an exceptionally impressive to an exceptionally strained fiscal position

Author

Listed:
  • Kim Massey Heide
  • Erling Holmøy
  • Ingeborg Foldøy Solli
  • Birger Strøm

    () (Statistics Norway)

Abstract

Large petroleum revenues make Norway an enviable fiscal loner. The fiscal policy rule adopted from 2001 transforms petroleum wealth into foreign assets, and only the real return on the financial fund should be spent annually. Despite this ambitious saving of the petroleum wealth, we find it unlikely that present tax rates and welfare schemes are sustainable in a long run perspective. Rather, the results from combining detailed models of demography and government expenditures with a detailed CGE model, suggest that Norway is exceptional also with respect to strong growth in government expenditures. In our baseline scenario the payroll tax rate must be increased continuously when ageing sets in after 2020, passing twice the present level about 2045. This is required even if the pension fund reaches 1.4 times GDP, commanding an unprecedented degree of fiscal discipline.

Suggested Citation

  • Kim Massey Heide & Erling Holmøy & Ingeborg Foldøy Solli & Birger Strøm, 2006. "A welfare state funded by nature and OPEC. A guided tour on Norway's path from an exceptionally impressive to an exceptionally strained fiscal position," Discussion Papers 464, Statistics Norway, Research Department.
  • Handle: RePEc:ssb:dispap:464
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    File URL: https://www.ssb.no/a/publikasjoner/pdf/DP/dp464.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Klette, Tor Jakob, 1999. "Market Power, Scale Economies and Productivity: Estimates from a Panel of Establishment Data," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(4), pages 451-476, December.
    2. Pablo Antolín & Wim Suyker, 2001. "How Should Norway Respond to Ageing?," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 296, OECD Publishing.
    3. K. Mc Morrow & W. Röger, 2002. "EU pension reform - An overview of the debate and an empirical assessment of the main policy reform options," European Economy - Economic Papers 2008 - 2015 162, Directorate General Economic and Financial Affairs (DG ECFIN), European Commission.
    4. Dennis Fredriksen & Kim Massey Heide & Erling Holmøy & Ingeborg Foldøy Solli, 2005. "Macroeconomic effects of proposed pension reforms in Norway," Discussion Papers 417, Statistics Norway, Research Department.
    5. Thai-Thanh Dang & Pablo Antolín & Howard Oxley, 2001. "Fiscal Implications of Ageing: Projections of Age-Related Spending," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 305, OECD Publishing.
    6. Beetsma, Roel & Bettendorf, Leon & Broer, Peter, 2003. "The budgeting and economic consequences of ageing in the Netherlands," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 20(5), pages 987-1013, September.
    7. Kotlikoff, Laurence J., 2002. "Generational policy," Handbook of Public Economics,in: A. J. Auerbach & M. Feldstein (ed.), Handbook of Public Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 27, pages 1873-1932 Elsevier.
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    Cited by:

    1. Erling Holmøy, 2007. "Fiscal sustainability: Must the problem be diminished before we can see it?," Discussion Papers 499, Statistics Norway, Research Department.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Population ageing; Fiscal sustainability; Computable general equilibrium model; Dynamic micro simulation;

    JEL classification:

    • H30 - Public Economics - - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents - - - General
    • H55 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Social Security and Public Pensions
    • H62 - Public Economics - - National Budget, Deficit, and Debt - - - Deficit; Surplus

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