Norwegian economy expands by 0.8 percent in second quarter

OSLO, Sept 5 (AFP) - The Norwegian economy grew by 0.8 percent in the second quarter of 2002 from the first three months of the year, but only because of oil activities, figures released Thursday by the national statistics bureau showed. The country's mainland gross domestic product (GDP), which excludes offshore petrol, gas, and maritime transport data, fell by 0.7 percent from first quarter 2002, Statistics Norway said in a statement. Norway is the third biggest oil exporter in the world, after Saudi Arabia and Russia. First quarter GDP, meanwhile, increased by 1.0 percent from the same period a year earlier, corrected data showed. The year-on-year comparison must take into account the fact that Easter came in March this year, instead of April as was the case in 2001, the statistics service stressed. phy/wai/lt