Norway warned about skyrocketing benefit costs due to low population growth

Source: Xinhua| 2018-01-30 02:55:25|Editor: yan
Video PlayerClose

OSLO, Jan. 29 (Xinhua) -- Norwegian Labour and Welfare Administration (NAV) has predicted the country's social security benefit expenditure to skyrocket due to low population growth, public broadcaster NRK reported Monday.

NAV forecasted a cost increase of 20 billion to 90 billion kroner (2.6 billion to 11.6 billion U.S. dollars) in 2060, from now.

The higher expenses for covering the people's benefits are expected to happen due to an increase in pensions.

"The weight of the benefits will be greatest if growth in the population is small. Then there are fewer who receive benefits, but also fewer who work. It will be relatively worse for us to have low growth in the population," the NAV's Ole Christian Lien told NRK.

"I hope this report contributes to giving the Norwegian people a sense of reality, we have to wake up now," said Anne-Kari Bratten, CEO of the employer's organization, Spekter.

According to her, Norwegian youth will have to start working earlier and seniors will have to work longer until they can retire.

According to the report, in 2060, the Norwegian population that is aged 67 years and over will be more than double, with an increase of 105 percent from 2017 to 2060.

NAV administers about one thrid of the Norwegian national budget. In 2016, NAV paid out 418 billion kroner to 2,642,700 people.

Nowadays, NAV benefits make up around 16 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP) for mainland Norway, and by 2060 they could make up 17 to 20 percent of mainland GDP. (1 U.S. dollar=7.71 kroner)