Norwegian oil rig Goliat on its way to the Barents Sea. Photo: Thomas Nilsen

Norway’s oil fund reaches $1 trillion

The world’s largest sovereign wealth fund hit the stunning $1,000,000,000,000 on Tuesday.
September 19, 2017

«I don’t think anyone expected the fund to ever reach 1 trillion dollars when the first transfer of oil revenue was made in May 1996. Reaching 1 trillion dollars is a milestone, and the growth in the fund’s market value has been stunning, » says Yngve Slyngstad, Chief Executive Officer in Norges Bank Investment Management. 

The Norwegian Government Pension Fund Global invests the revenue from the oil and gas sector off the coast of Norway.

Established only 20 years ago, the revenue tells the story about a highly profitable industry with staggering tax income for the state. Instead of loading the cash-flow into Norway’s economy and consumption, the Norwegians is saving for future generations. «One day the oil will run out, but the return of the fund will continue to benefit the population,» the fund explains.

The fund has invested in nearly 9,000 companies in 77 countries around the world. In value, the fund owns 1,3% of all listed companies worldwide. 2,5% of the fund is invested in unlisted real estate in cities like Paris, London and New York.

Did you know the Norwegians through the fund owns part of more than 100 buildings in London, along the Regent Street, from Piccadilly Circus beyond Oxford Street?

The fund’s value is today not too dependent on global oil prices. The one trillion dollar mark hit on Tuesday comes after a strengthening of the world’s major currencies against the US dollar, combined with strong equity market, the fund says in a press-release.

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How much a trillion dollar is? Well, what about buying almost 3,000 Airbus A380, the world’s largest passenger aircraft that comes at a price of $375 million each. Or, building some 260 copies of the One World Trade Centre that costed $3,8 billion to erect downtown Manhattan.

For Norway’s population of 5,2 million, the fund will secure pensions for generations to come.

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