Right wing move to thwart salmon tax vote

WITH the Norwegian government’s salmon tax proposal plan now resting on a majority of one, the two main right of centre opposition parties are working to try to scupper the plan.

The Conservatives and their traditional coalition partner, the Progressive party, (Frp), are insisting that every member of parliament be physically present in parliament for Wednesday’s crucial vote.

The Labour-Centre government secured a slim majority last week after the Liberals and the single seat Patient Focus party switched sides after a promise that the tax rate is reduced to 25%.

The rate was originally 40% before being pegged back to 35% at the beginning of the year.

According to media reports, the Conservatives and Progressives have demanded a full parliament for the vote by refusing to agree to partnering arrangements for any member who cannot attend.

Because of transport difficulties and the distances involved, it is rare for every MP to be physically present in the Storting at the same time.

As in the UK an unofficial practice of pairing has developed whereby the parties agree to balance each other out.

Frp deputy leader Hans Andreas Limi told the news site VG that he thought several rural MPs from the Labour, Centre and Liberal parties, particularly those representing coastal areas, may decide not to travel to Oslo for the vote.

“I hope they will follow their consciences and defy the party whip,” he added.

Meanwhile, the SV or Socialist Left party, which normally supports the government on budget issues, continues to be highly critical of the decision to agree to Liberal and Patient Focus party terms.

SV wants a 48% tax rate and the inclusion of cod farming companies.

It also believes there may be another vote on the issue when the 2024 budget proposals are published in the autumn.

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