Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis, the war in Ukraine, rising inflation, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.
Factsheet for measure NO-2020-12/1077 – measures in Norway
|Country||Norway , applies nationwide|
|Time period||Temporary, 20 March 2020 – 18 September 2020|
|Type||Bipartite collective agreements|
Ensuring business continuity and support for essential services
– Change of work arrangements (working time, rota schemes)
|Author||Aasmund Arup Seip, FAFO and Eurofound|
|Measure added||09 September 2020 (updated 17 September 2020)|
To facilitate the adaption to crisis management during the COVID-19 crisis, the Norwegian Federation of Service Industries and Retail Trade (member of NHO) and the unions in private nursing sector (e.g. Fagforbundet, Norsk sykepleierforbund) on 20 March made an agreement on working time. The measures were introduced to make it possible on short notice to increase staffing in private nursing homes and paramedic, and, for infection control reasons, to reduce the number of shifts and unnecessary movement of staff between different wards. Similar collective agreements were made with another employers’ organisation, Enterprise Federation of Norway (Virke), to cover the rest of the private nursing sector.
On 20 March, the Norwegian Federation of Service Industries and Retail Trade (member of NHO) and the unions in private nursing sector (e.g. Fagforbundet, Norsk sykepleierforbund) made an agreement on working time. The agreement was made pursuant to section 10-12 (4) in the Working Environment Act that gives larger trade unions right to enter into a collective agreement that deviates from the law's working hours provisions.
The collective agreement expanded the limits to overtime (from 10 to 25 hours per 7 days), and gave the employer the opportunity to averaging working hours. The limit of total working hours in any 24-hour period were raised from 10 to 16 hours. According to the agreement, employers are obliged to discuss the use of overtime with shop stewards before overtime work under the agreement is implemented. The agreement states that overtime cannot be imposed pursuant to the agreement when the extraordinary situation associated with coronavirus no longer exists. The validity period of the agreement was originally 26 weeks, and the agreement could be terminated with two month's notice from each of the parties.
No information to date.
Employees in standard employment
Workers in care facilities
Workers in essential services
Companies providing essential services
||Does not apply to citizens|
Social partners jointly
No special funding required
Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:
|Trade unions||Employers' organisations|
|Role||Agreed (outcome) incl. social partner initiative||Agreed (outcome) incl. social partner initiative|
|Form||Not applicable||Not applicable|
Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:
The collective agreement on working time during the COVID-19 pandemic was negotiated by the parties, the Norwegian Federation of Service Industries and Retail Trade (member of NHO) and the unions in private nursing sector (e.g. Fagforbundet, Norsk sykepleierforbund), on initiative from the state and the social partners jointly, to facilitate crisis management. By taking such action, the social partners wanted to keep regulation of working time in a collective agreement and avoid state intervention.
The social partners are supportive of regulation through collective agreements and reached an agreement in short time. . In the media, there was a discussion between the employers’ organisation, Enterprise Federation of Norway (Virke) and The Norwegian Confederation of Trade Unions (LO), concerning workingtime regulation for businesses without collective agreement. The employers’ organisation asked for an amendment to the legislation, in order to give such businesses ability to deviate from standard working time regulation. LO, on the other side, argued that the present legislation gives larger trade unions right to enter into a collective agreement that deviates from the law's working hours provisions, and that it would be irresponsible to give the employers a unilateral right to deviate from The Working Environment Act.
|Economic area||Sector (NACE level 2)|
|Q - Human Health And Social Work Activities||Q86 Human health activities|
|Q87 Residential care activities|
|Q88 Social work activities without accommodation|
|Occupation (ISCO level 2)|
|Health associate professionals|
Eurofound (2020), Private nursing homes and paramedics: New collective agreement expands access to overtime , measure NO-2020-12/1077 (measures in Norway), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin, https://static.eurofound.europa.eu/covid19db/cases/NO-2020-12_1077.html
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Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process.