Mayors in 32 municipalities warn in a joint call against a full halt in new oil projects and demand action.
– We ask the government to immediately implement measures that will alleviate the dramatic situation for Norway’s most important industry, writes mayors from 32 municipalities in the joint appeal, according to NTB, and reproduced by Stavanger Aftenblad, amongst other.
The letter was sent to, among others, Prime Minister Erna Solberg, Minister of Petroleum and Energy Tina Bru and Minister of Finance Jan Tore Sanner.
The Mayors believe the measure that will be most important to secure jobs is the displacement of tax deductions, a measure that was recently proposed (article in Norwegian) by the Norwegian oil and gas association (NOROG).
– In order to stimulate the oil and gas industry, which is in deep crisis due to low oil prices and the Covid-19 in general, the authorities should change tax regulations as soon as possible and introduce depreciation the same year as the investment is made, says Stavanger mayor Kari Nessa Nordtun, whom according to NTB has taken the lead in the initiative.
-The industry needs stability in the activity level and, not least, to secure professional competence, workplaces and recruitment, Nordtun continues.
-If more investments become profitable, it will further help keep employees working in the supplier industry, the mayors point out.
They cite Aker BP and Equinor as examples of companies that have several planned projects that can help keep up activity levels on the Norwegian continental shelf (NCS) in the near future.
– This is a targeted proposal that will have immediate effect because it will give the companies increased liquidity and an improved project economy, which helps to maintain activity on the NCS.
-This will create activity in the supplier industry that will help secure jobs in municipalities across the country, the mayors stress.
TEXT: RONNY SETSÅ