Parliament examines ESA oil complaint / News / The Foreigner

Parliament examines ESA oil complaint. The Ministry of Oil and Energy’s proposed amendment to the Oil Law (Petroleumsloven) is to undergo a Parliamentary Hearing today following the recent furore over secrecy. Norwegian Opposition politicians are outraged following last week’s reports. It has been revealed the Ministry deliberately concealed correspondence from the EFTA Surveillance Authority (ESA) for more than two years, that both complained about and requested changes to current policy. Oil companies are currently obliged to maintain local offices near oil fields to promote regional industry and jobs. It is alleged the government has played down the importance altering the practise, whilst at the same time fighting against ESA’s complaints since 2009.

olabortenmoe, terjeriis-johansen, esa, eftasurveillanceauthority, oillawchanges



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Parliament examines ESA oil complaint

Published on Tuesday, 7th June, 2011 at 11:50 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last Updated on 7th June 2011 at 13:59.

The Ministry of Oil and Energy’s proposed amendment to the Oil Law (Petroleumsloven) is to undergo a Parliamentary Hearing today following the recent furore over secrecy.

Ola Borten Mo, Oil and Energy Minister
Ola Borten Mo, Oil and Energy Minister
Photo: Berit Roald/Scanpix/OED


Norwegian Opposition politicians are outraged following last week’s reports. It has been revealed the Ministry deliberately concealed correspondence from the EFTA Surveillance Authority (ESA) for more than two years, that both complained about and requested changes to current policy.

Oil companies are currently obliged to maintain local offices near oil fields to promote regional industry and jobs. It is alleged the government has played down the importance altering the practise, whilst at the same time fighting against ESA’s complaints since 2009.

Nevertheless, Parliament’s European Consultative Committee was not informed about the Ministry’s proposed legislation amendment, and it was not sent to Hearing until just before Easter this year.  

The Ministry denies the matter was handled improperly. Minister of Oil and Energy Ola Borten Moe, who is currently in Azerbaijan as part of a delegation led by HRH Crown Prince Haakon, also alleges Parliament was not informed because “...the Ministry’s aim was to keep the current Oil Law’s wording when ESA began its work [regarding Clause 10.2] in 2009.

“Norway’s obligations as part of the EEA Agreement mean it cannot generally restrict oil companies’ organisation or use of bases. It was not until winter that it finally became clear the wording needed to be changed to bring it better in line with practise uncontested by ESA,” reports Stavanger Aftenblad.

Dagfinn Høybråthen, leader of the Christian Democrats (KrF), believes the government is contradicting itself.

“It is undermining its own arguments regarding the insignificance of any changes by admitting it fought them to the end,” he says.

When asked for a comment by The Foreigner, a press spokesperson at the Ministry of Oil and Energy says "we have no more to say than what we have already."



Published on Tuesday, 7th June, 2011 at 11:50 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last updated on 7th June 2011 at 13:59.

This post has the following tags: olabortenmoe, terjeriis-johansen, esa, eftasurveillanceauthority, oillawchanges.





  
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