Bjørnar Skjæran, has been appointed the new Minister of Fisheries and Maritime Affairs. Photo: Labour Party
Deputy leader of the Labour Party, Bjørnar Skjæran, has been appointed Minister of Fisheries and Maritime Affairs in the new government, replacing Odd Emil Ingebrigtsen.
With the formation of a new government, it has been chosen to expand the ministerial post and for the portfolio to be renamed Minister of Fisheries and Maritime Affairs.
The 55-year-old Skjæran is from Selnes in Nordland and has been politically active in the Labour Party for many years. He has been a farmer on Selnes and run his own transport company.
Norwegian Fishermen’s Association leader Kjell Ingebrigtsen welcomed the news. On the appointment he said, “I would like to congratulate Bjørnar Skjæran on his appointment and welcome him into a collaboration to develop this important industry further.”
One of the first tasks the new Minister will start is a new quota report. It is hoped that the new report will provide predictability for the fishing industry ensure settlement, activity and profitability along the entire coast according to the Hurdal platform.
The new Government says its goal is for the quota notification to ensure, among other things, that the quotas are distributed in a predictable and fairer way, that restrictions are placed on ownership in the coastal fishing fleet and that the breadth and diversity of this fleet is secured. They say that this shall be done, among other things, based on a sufficient quota basis.
Other areas in fisheries the new government wants to improve is pay and working conditions.
The government wants to improve recruitment to fisheries through targeted schemes and including measures for generational change. Efforts against fishing and environmental crime will also be strengthened, the new government will have more controls quayside and strengthen efforts to stop plastic pollution in the sea.
Furthermore, the government will ensure decent pay and working conditions for employees in the seafood industries and use A-crime centres and the Norwegian Labour Inspection Authority more actively in the fight against social dumping and work-related crime in the fishing industry.
The new government says it will continue the compensation scheme for the CO2 tax in the fishing fleet, as well as secure schemes that facilitate green conversion of the fishing fleet.