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Norway – is it part of Europe or what?

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The big debate raging today at Vulture Central centres on Norway, to whit, is it part of Europe, or what?

This polemic was provoked by a large number of Norwegians complaining bitterly about their country's status on our Cash'n'Carrion Register shop.

The obstreperous emails in question focus on Norway's economic relationship with the European Union (EU). A quick search of the web revealed this illuminating website giving interesting facts on the subject, including the following:

Norway's relations with the EU are mainly governed by the Agreement on the European Economic Area (EEA). The EEA Agreement is in force since 1.1.1994 and extends the Single Market legislation, with the exception of Agriculture and Fisheries Management, from the 15 EU Member States to Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein. Relations with Norway through EEA co-operation, as well as bilateral relations, are close and generally smooth.

It's sad to report, then, that this spirit of international love does apparently not extend to Cash'n'Carrion. According to the system therein, Norway's 1994 vote not to join the EU has condemned it to be listed not with EU member states, but rather with the rest of the world.

But why, you may ask, has this apparently trivial factoid ruffled the feathers of the good burghers of Oslo? Well, it means that anyone buying our top Reg kit from Norway has to pay a higher postal rate - that applieds to the rest of the world. They do not, however, have to pay VAT.

On balance, your Norwegians end up paying roughly the same as someone from the EU. It seems that the main issue is political. While we appreciate that Norwegians may wish to be seen as part of Europe, it's clearly more than just a matter of geography. Well, according to the Cash'n'Carrion system, at least.

In the meantime, we're looking at clarifying the situation re the categorisation of non-EU European states as 'Rest of World'. Watch this space. ®

Song of Norway

Register readers not familiar with Norway may be interested in our cut-out-and-keep list of interesting Norwegian facts, courtesy of www.northerner.com:

  • Norway is a long, narrow country on the northwestern edge of the European continent.
  • Norway is mostly a high, mountainous plateau covered by bare rock.
  • Almost all the people of Norway can read and write.
  • Capital: Oslo.
  • Official language: Norwegian (Bokmal and Nynorsk).
  • Official name: Kongeriket Norge (Kingdom of Norway).
  • Constitution: Monarchy (from 1991 King Harald V)
  • Population: estimated 1998 population 4,400,000
  • National holiday: Constitution Day, May 17.
  • National anthem: "Ja, vi elsker dette landet". ("Yes, We Love This Land").

Famous Norwegians
  • Leif Ericson - said to have discovered America in 1000AD
  • Henrik lbsen - wrote plays.
  • Edvard Munch - celebrated painter.
  • Edvard Grieg - knocked out a few good tunes.
  • Vidkun Quisling - Norway's wartime premier. His surname became synonymous with traitor
  • That bloke from A-ha and the pretty girl from Aqua

Finest hour

The country's wartime resistance, nicely captured in

The Heroes of Telemark
Least fine hour

See

A-ha

and

Aqua

, above.

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