Task force expected to bring down electricity prices in Nordic region

Sweden and Norway announced that they were ready to launch a joint task force aimed at reining in the soaring electricity costs in the Nordic region.

The decision was announced following a meeting between Swedish and Norwegian ministers in Stockholm, Xinhua news agency reported.

“Together with the Norwegian government, the [Swedish] government initiates a task force for the Nordic countries regarding the development of the market model,” Swedish Minister for Energy and Digital Development Khashayar Farmanbar said in a press release.

He said the two countries are joining forces to ensure secure access to electricity and low prices in the Nordic region. “We want to find common solutions to common problems.”

According to the Swedish government, Denmark and Finland will also be invited to join the task force, to seek “solutions and models that ensure a functioning electricity market that can provide lower electricity prices for households and businesses and thus economic growth.”

The Nordic countries have had an exchange of power ever since the 1960s, said Terje Aasland, Norwegian minister of petroleum and energy, in the press release.

Against the backdrop of the energy crisis in Europe, these countries are seeking intensified cooperation to secure power supplies for industries and the society, said Aasland.

He acknowledged the importance of the liquidity guarantees to electricity companies recently proposed by Sweden and Finland. Though there is currently no need for such an intervention in Norway, he said his country was following the development of the electricity market closely.

The Swedish parliament on Monday approved the government’s proposal to issue 250 billion Swedish crowns’ ($23 billion) credit guarantees to electricity companies in Sweden and neighboring countries to tackle the problems that have arisen on the electricity exchange.

On Sunday, the Finnish government also proposed to provide domestic electricity companies with loans and guarantees of up to 10 billion euros ($10 billion) to secure the sufficiency of their cash resources.

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