Svalbard Economy Stats


Coal mining, tourism, and international research are the major revenue sources on Svalbard. Coal mining is the dominant economic activity and a treaty of 9 February 1920 gave the 41 signatories equal rights to exploit mineral deposits, subject to Norwegian regulation. Although US, UK, Dutch, and Swedish coal companies have mined in the past, the only companies still engaging in this are Norwegian and Russian. The settlements on Svalbard are essentially company towns. The Norwegian state-owned coal company employs nearly 60% of the Norwegian population on the island, runs many of the local services, and provides most of the local infrastructure. There is also some hunting of seal, reindeer, and fox.


  • Budget > Expenditures: Expenditures calculated on an exchange rate basis, i.e., not in purchasing power parity (PPP) terms
  • Budget > Revenues: Revenues calculated on an exchange rate basis, i.e., not in purchasing power parity (PPP) terms
  • Budget > Revenues > Per capita: Revenues calculated on an exchange rate basis, i.e., not in purchasing power parity (PPP) terms Per capita figures expressed per 1 population.
  • Currency: The national medium of exchange and its basic sub-unit.
  • Exports: This entry provides the total US dollar amount of merchandise exports on an f.o.b. (free on board) basis. These figures are calculated on an exchange rate basis, i.e., not in purchasing power parity (PPP) terms.
  • GDP > Purchasing power parity: This entry gives the gross domestic product (GDP) or value of all final goods and services produced within a nation in a given year. A nation's GDP at purchasing power parity (PPP) exchange rates is the sum value of all goods and services produced in the country valued at prices prevailing in the United States. This is the measure most economists prefer when looking at per-capita welfare and when comparing living conditions or use of resources across countries. The measure is difficult to compute, as a US dollar value has to be assigned to all goods and services in the country regardless of whether these goods and services have a direct equivalent in the United States (for example, the value of an ox-cart or non-US military equipment); as a result, PPP estimates for some countries are based on a small and sometimes different set of goods and services. In addition, many countries do not formally participate in the World Bank's PPP project that calculates these measures, so the resulting GDP estimates for these countries may lack precision. For many developing countries, PPP-based GDP measures are multiples of the official exchange rate (OER) measure. The difference between the OER- and PPP-denominated GDP values for most of the weathly industrialized countries are generally much smaller.
  • Labor force: This entry contains the total labor force figure.
Budget > Expenditures $11.50 million 1998 12th out of 13
Budget > Revenues $25.07 million 2011 212th out of 221
Budget > Revenues > Per capita $9,096.52 per capita 2004 6th out of 24
Currency Norwegian krone 2008
Exports $197.60 million 2000 1st out of 3
GDP > Purchasing power parity $6.31 billion 2013 1st out of 1
Labor force 1 2013 228th out of 230

SOURCES: CIA World Factbooks 18 December 2003 to 28 March 2011; All CIA World Factbooks 18 December 2003 to 18 December 2008; CIA World Factbooks 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013


Svalbard Economy Profiles (Subcategories)

Budget 3 Government 5
  • Svalbard ranked 4th last for exports amongst Cold countries in 2000.
  • Svalbard ranked first for trade > exports > per capita globally in 2004.
  • Svalbard has ranked in the top 29 for trade > exports since 2000.
  • Svalbard has ranked in the top 26 for labor force per thousand people since 2010.
  • Svalbard has ranked in the top 212 for budget > revenues since 1998.
  • Svalbard has ranked in the top 155 for GDP > purchasing power parity since 2012.
  • Svalbard has ranked in the top 228 for labor force since 2010.

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