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Støre and Vedum warn of more active state

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In the work on a new government platform, you are not done until you have finished everything, said SP leader Trygve Slagsvold Vedum on his way to a new day of negotiations at Hurdalsjøen Hotel on Monday.

But just a few hours later, he and Labor leader Jonas Gahr Støre came out to present part of the as yet unfinished government platform to the press.

– The news here is that we announce a new direction in business policy, Støre said.

– But there is a lot of news in what we have said, Vedum added later.

Want more active state

The main line was clear from both party leaders:

– What you hear in Norwegian business today, with the goals we have, is that they are calling for a more active state that sets up and makes demands. You hear it among the small and medium-sized, but also among the large, with some clear goals and a state that wants something with its ownership and the policy it pursues, Støre said.

The Labor Party leader also talked about how the state can pursue a policy where you relieve the risk of getting started with new technology, or take ownership positions temporarily or more permanently to get started with new initiatives.

But Støre rejects that this is ideological:

– This is a very pragmatic view of what it takes to achieve goals. I do not have an ideological perspective that we should go up or down with state ownership, Støre explains to NTB.

He says it may be relevant to strengthen state ownership in some areas, but that it may also be more targeted.

– And then we have some fantastic opportunities in some of the state ownership today. For example, Statkraft is one of Europe’s leading renewable players. And we have argued that within the hydrogen investment, it is a very important player for us to develop the value chains that are needed for us to have a tight position on hydrogen.

Public tenders

Another measure is stricter climate requirements and stricter quality requirements – for example requirements for the use of apprentices – in public procurement.

– Norway has a large public sector, and the public sector has many purchases over the course of a year. It is between 500 and 600 billion kroner. How to use public procurement also has a lot to say both for the services people receive, and how to create more jobs, Vedum said.

According to him, the thinking is that large public procurement, both municipal and state, should be used in such a way that they strengthen Norwegian industry and value creation and promote green industries.

At the same time, orderly and proper working conditions must be ensured, according to Vedum.

“Only in the transport sector are there many steps we can take to be able to strengthen the competitiveness of Norwegian players, at the same time as we get better solutions,” he said.

Hydrogen and battery

At the same time, Støre mentioned both hydrogen and battery as possible focus areas.

– If we look at the climate goals towards 2030, industrial innovation is much of the solution, but we will not achieve anything until we get a change of pace in the way industrial and business policy is developed, Støre said.

– This is an important field for us that we will concretize in several chapters in the government platform, Støre said about hydrogen investment.

Another sector Støre highlighted is the health industry.

Earlier Monday, NHO presented a report that addresses various green areas where they believe there are great market opportunities for Norway. Here they go into batteries, offshore wind and hydrogen, among other things.

Hurdal negotiations continue on Tuesday

On Tuesday, the party leaders in the Labor Party and the Socialist People’s Party will resume government negotiations at Hurdalsjøen Hotel with a negotiation meeting at 10 am.

The Labor Party and the Center Party inform the press. On Monday morning, both Labor leader Jonas Gahr Støre and Social Democrat leader Trygve Slagsvold Vedum arrived at the negotiating hotel after being away for the weekend.

Their plan is to stay at the hotel for the next few days and work together to draft a government declaration, which will be presented this week at the earliest.

The government negotiations started on Wednesday last week, after several days of explorations in which SV also participated. After SV, which has previously been a partner in the red-green governments, left the negotiating table, many have wondered what the new Labor-SP government will be called.

– We have not carried the child to the baptism yet, so we have to wait with it until we arrive completely, Støre said when he was asked about this.

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