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MPs sitting in Norway's Storting have approved a proposal by the Socialist Left Party (SV) for a new tax on salmon exports.
MPs sitting in Norway's Storting have approved a proposal by the Socialist Left Party (SV) for a new tax on salmon exports.

Norway's salmon producers are to be landed with a new tax on exports, according to reports.

The Bergens Tidenede newspaper reports that Norway's Socialist Left Party, SV, was able to gain enough parliamentary support for the introduction of a new charge on farmed fish, despite being only the seventh-largest party in the Storting, as the parliament in known. The party holds just seven of the parliament's 169 seats. 

BT writes that the new tax was passed early on Friday morning, against the votes of the Conservatives and the Progress Party.

Based on today' s export prices and volumes, the tax will give a yearly income of approximately 400 million NOK (£40m). The tax is likely to be 25 øre - about 2.5p in sterling - per kilogram on exported unprocessed salmon. Realistically, the tax will probably be introduced from next year.

Not good business

Revenues from the new tax will go to the Aquaculture Fund which in turn allocates money to municipalities that have fish farms in the sea.

Norway has 426 municipalities, and 171 of them host salmon aquaculture in seawater.

SV MP Torgeir Knag Fylkesnes has been at the forefront of the new tax, and the Network for Fjord and Coastal Municipalities has supported the proposal.

"This will mean a lot for school, health and environmental work along the Norwegian coast, "said Fylkesnes.

 BT said SV gained inspiration for its tax plans from Scotland.

I am disappointed on behalf of industry, environment and society at large,” Conservative Party MP Ove Trellevik told BT.

This is not good business policy and does not contribute to competitiveness,” commented Seafood Norway CEO Geir Ove Ystmark.