Norway

Norway

Norway
800px-Flag_of_Norwaysvg.png
Population 5,755,500
SINless Population (est.) 13%
Per Capita Income 20,000
Below Poverty Level 39%
Megacorporate Affiliation 21%
Education:
Less than 12 years 28%
GED 35%
4 year degree 32%
Masters or higher 4%
Major Language Norwegian (83%)
Currency Euro
Capital Oslo

Once a prosperous country, Norway has been transformed into a poor, bleak and dreary bureaucratic nightmare and shadow haven.

Back in the nineties, Norway was the world's third largest oil exporter, with years of budget surplus saved in a Government Petroleum Fund and invested in foreign interests. Its standard of living was amongst the highest in the world. Then the Awakening struck, ruining the country's major industries. The Black Tide and freakish weather effectively shut down oil drilling activities in the North and Norwegian Seas for years, also wreaking havoc on the fishing industry. The country fell back on its Petroleum Fund to stay afloat, but its value had sunken drastically. By the mid-twenties, the fund was depleted, invested in remotely controlled and automated sub-sea oil rigs. A long-term focus on computer and net technologies gave the economy a small boost, but also enforced dependency that this strategy would pan out.

The Crash couldn't have come at a worse time. Norway had nothing left in reserve, and its economy crumbled. In order to raise the capital needed to survive, Norway turned to Global Financial Services, a more-than-willing creditor, now known as Zurich-Orbital Gemeinschaft Bank.

With Norway effectively in its pocket. the Corporate Court exerted its influence to open the country's numerous natural resources to its members. It was like letting kids loose in a Stuffer Shack. Mountain areas were strip-mined, large rivers and waterfalls were dammed and ecosystems disturbed by spills from test drilling. The class gap grew as the megacorps imported their own workforces, ousted local businesses and played divide and conquer with the Norwegian people. Less than a quarter of the population found secure cushy jobs and safe homes. The rest were left to fend for themselves - the state had enough problems as it was and couldn't provide for the citizens like they had before.

Hundreds of thousands were thrown into poverty during these trying times, sparking large riots and a drastic rise in crime. Crippled by ineffective leadership, the corps took matters into their own hands, forcing the poor and unemployed out of the city centers. Outside of the secure corporate enclaves, police services are scarce and lacking. These areas are infested with crime, inferior living conditions and a discouraging feeling of apathy. Crime lords and gangs rule the streets at night, and no one feels safe.

There haven't been many Norwegian multinational or extraterritorial corps, and now that Kvaerner has merged with Maersk, there's none left. Saeder-Krupp is the big fish in this pond. Together with AG Chemie, they've resumed offshore operations that were abandoned shortly after the Awakening. There's not much oil left in the reserves, but that hasn't stopped them from seismically shaking up the whole shoreline and poking holes into every square kilometer of the seabed. The big cybertech companies - Yamatetsu, Cross, Renraku and Shiawase - like to keep a significant presence in Oslo, and all have their Scandinavian headquarters here.

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