Vadsø is the county capital of Finnmark and home to the County Governor’s office. A number of government agencies are also based in the town, such as Vegvesen, NAV, Arktis - Innovation Norway enterprise, the tax office, the Government Fisheries Directorate and Vadsø Prison. Hospital procurement company, Sykehusinnkjøp HF and FeFO are other important public organisations based here.
In addition to public agencies, Vadsø also has a diverse and thriving private business sector with companies involved in power, trade, services, fisheries, agriculture, tourism, culture, business start-ups, consulting and accountancy.
Vadsø municipality has one of the highest educational attainment levels in the county and the public and private sectors recently teamed up to deliver the exciting vds.no initiative, to publicise job opportunities and the celebrate the benefits of living in Vadsø.
The population in the municipality is currently 6,125, with most people living in Vadsø itself. The next biggest community is Vestre Jakobselv, 17 kilometres west of Vadsø. 1,000 people live in Vestre Jakobselv which has many small businesses, car dealerships, tourism companies and fishermen. The latter two are not unrelated as the town is renowned for its fine salmon-fishing river that attracts fishermen throughout the season.
East of Vadsø, there’s a chain of small villages One of them, Kiby, is just 2 kilometres from Vadsø and is home to town’s airport. Then there’s Lille Salttjern, Golnes and Ekkerøy, which has become a very popular tourist destination. Finally, the villages of Krampenes and Skallelv boast top quality salmon-fishing rivers. Finally, the Varanger National Scenic Route connects all these settlements in the municipality that covers some 1,250 square kilometres.
Vadsø municipality runs along a sizeable length of the Varanger National Park boundary, the most Arctic-influenced expanse on the Norwegian mainland. The landscape is a textbook illustration of Quaternary geology but is also a surprising haven for plants and wildlife, infused with Sami cultural heritage.