January 27, 2023

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- Can enter into contracts with confidence - E24

– Can enter into contracts with confidence – E24

A new move means the salmon industry can safely enter into long-term contracts and abandon layoffs, Finance Minister Trygve Slacksvold Vadham tells the Independent Trade Union Movement. – We have to pay close attention to it, says Sjømat Norge.

Finance Minister Trygve Slaksvold Vedum (r) and Fisheries Minister Bjorner Skjärn recently held a press conference on the land rent tax on aquaculture and dialogue with the industry.
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In a letter to the Storting, Vedam announces new changes to the plan for land rent tax for aquaculture, the paper says. Free trade union movement.

A letter is an answer Representative proposal From the right.

The tax has been controversial, and processing companies owned by Salmar and Leroy have sent layoff notices to more than 1,000 employees. They say they are reluctant to enter into long-term contracts to supply semman due to uncertainty about tax incentives.

The problem, according to the salmon industry, is that from 2023 the tax will be based on the market price of salmon, not the actual price they receive when they enter into standard contracts. These prices are often lower than the market price.

But the Finance Minister is confident that deals can now be renegotiated. By 2023, companies will have to pay tax based on the actual price they achieve, not the market price, he says.

“Based on the above, I believe there is no need to wait to enter into contracts from the processing business,” Vedum writes in a letter to Storting.

– No grounds for dismissal

The government was previously skeptical about allowing salmon companies to tax ground rent based on the price they actually pay. Many groups are involved in both fish production and processing, and higher taxes on production may lead them to sell fish at lower prices to their own processing companies to reduce the tax bill.

Until next year, according to Vedam, they can use such internal prices as a baseline. But Vedam says in a letter to the Storting that companies must document that their pricing is correct.

This will also be checked later by the Fixed Price Council, which the government is considering setting up to determine the correct market price. Veda says that this consultation could be ready by 2024.

– Firms can safely enter into contracts knowing that they will be taxed at the correct price. Vedam tells NNN worker that there is no reason for dismissal based on land rent tax. Free trade union movement.

Anne Berit Anker Hansen, president of the Norwegian Association of Industrial and Leisure Workers (NNN), believes that Vedum’s action will lead to the abandonment of layoff notices.

According to the independent trade union movement, this is an important signal, says Agar Hansen.

Finance Minister Trygve Slaksvold Vedum (r) and Salmar’s President Gustav Witze recently met on NRK to discuss a new land rent tax for aquaculture.

Difference of opinion

Peder Egseth, business policy manager at industry body Sjømat Norge, could not answer whether salmon players would withdraw the layoff notices now.

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– Now there is no reason to dismiss, says the Vedas?

– Exeth tells E24 that we should take a closer look at the letter once we get it right.

A proposal for a ground rent tax for aquaculture is due to be introduced from the new year, but the Storting will not deal with the matter until the end of the new year. Now, for the second time in a short period, the Finance Minister has brought changes in the original plan, Exeth pointed out.

– This creates the impression that the proposal is not sufficiently prepared. He says it is difficult for the industry to deal with the minority government’s proposal, which has already been changed several times and does not have a majority in the Storting.

– Does this move put an end to the uncertainty the industry has complained about?

– There will be more uncertainty and unpredictability for the industry. This is obviously a step in the right direction. But Exeth says it’s a step in the right direction that the industry won’t have to pay tax on income it doesn’t have.

– More trouble

Storting representative Olve Grotle (H) is pleased that the government is coming up with a proposal for a solution, but points out that the agricultural industry does not think the move is enough.

– The closest industry has to answer this. “I see they still believe it’s problematic,” says Grotle to E24.

– We believe that the government should not make this scheme a fixed price system as it is insufficient to re-activate the market for fixed price contracts. You deviate from otherwise applicable policies that require you to pay tax based on actual sales prices. Then companies risk paying taxes on income they don’t have, Grotle says.

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– But is the government now open that real income, not market prices, will be the basis of tax in 2023?

– The government now accepts that the original proposal had major weaknesses. I feel the government is now taking another step back. But there would still be a risk that fixed price councils would fix prices quoted by companies themselves. So, says Grotle, the matter is not over.

The Conservatives want the ground rent tax to come into effect from 2024 and not 2023 as planned. They believe that the Storting case should be handled properly before the tax becomes effective.

– There are still many unresolved questions, and Grotle says the Conservative Party will not support the government’s tax plan.

Storage representative Olve Grotle (H).