Norway vs USA: How the 2 countries stack up on health care, income and life expectancy

President Donald Trump meets with Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg on Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2017, in the Oval Office at the White House.


By JOSH MAGNESS | McClatchy Washington Bureau | Published: January 13, 2018

WASHINGTON (Tribune News Service) — Why would people from Norway immigrate to the United States?

That’s what some people on Twitter were asking after The Washington Post reported Thursday that President Donald Trump asked why the United States would want to bring more immigrants from “shithole” countries like Haiti instead of places like Norway.

Trump took to Twitter Friday, denying the vulgar language.

“The language used by me at the DACA meeting was tough,” he tweeted, “but this was not the language used.”

Still, many wondered why people would leave the Scandinavian nation for the U.S. in the first place.

First, it’s important to note that more people are leaving this country for Norway than the other way around. Bloomberg reported that, according to Statistics Norway, 895 people moved from the U.S. to Norway, compared to just 502 who did the opposite.

And according to data from the Department of Homeland Security, an average of just 100 Norwegians a year moved to the U.S. from 2007 to 2016, CNN wrote.

There’s multiple likely reasons for that.

Norway, with a population just over 5,000,000 people, was ranked as the top nation in the World Happiness Report last March, edging out Denmark as the happiest country in the world, The Guardian reported.

The country has a universal healthcare system that covers all people regardless of their income, place of residence or origin, according to CNN.

Opinion website The Atlantic Sentinel listed other reasons why Norwegians might opt to stay in their country: it’s first in the Human Development Index, has an average annual salary of $68,434 and is number three overall in the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Report.

For comparison, the U.S. is 10th in the Human Development Index, has an average annual salary of $52,543 and ranks 45 in the Global Gender Gap Report, according to information compiled by the Sentinel. Also, life expectancy in Norway is 2.5 years higher than in the U.S.

©2018 McClatchy Washington Bureau
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