Norway Owns Its Oil. Canada Doesn’t. And That Has Made All The Difference

Canada and Norway produce about the same amount of oil and gas. Through a combination of public ownership and taxes Norway captures about 85 percent of the net revenue from sales. As a result its 25 year old Sovereign Fund has $1.1 trillion in assets that has been used to make Norway one of the most prosperous and least unequal countries on earth. Canada’s oil and gas system is 100 percent privately owned. Alberta, the heartland of Canadian oil, and Canada only captures about 20 percent of the revenue from sales.  As a result their Heritage Savings Fund, created 14 years before Norway’s, boasts just $17 billion in assets.

David Morris
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David Morris

David Morris is co-founder of the Institute for Local Self-Reliance and currently ILSR's distinguished fellow. His five non-fiction books range from an analysis of Chilean development to the future of electric power to the transformation of cities and neighborhoods.  For 14 years he was a regular columnist for the Saint Paul Pioneer Press. His essays on public policy have appeared in the New York TimesWall Street Journal, Washington PostSalonAlternetCommon Dreams, and the Huffington Post.