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PR(99)23: Authorisation of amendments to and the prolongation of two aid schemes for shipbuilding until 31 December 2000 (Norway)


The EFTA Surveillance Authority has authorised the amendment and prolongation of two Norwegian aid schemes for shipbuilding until 31 December 2000 (grants for shipbuilding and export credit guarantees for ships).

The grant scheme applies for contracts signed from 1st January 1999 until 31st December 2000. Grants may be awarded for shipbuilding and ship conversions carried out in Norway and in individual cases also for projects carried out abroad by Norwegian enterprises. The applicable ceilings for grants were raised from 7% to 9% for new-buildings with a contract value of more than Euro 10 million, and from 3,5% to 4,5% for smaller vessels and ship conversions. The increased aid ceilings are in accordance with the maximum ceilings fixed under the EC Shipbuilding Regulation.

Export credit guarantees for ships are provided for by the Guarantee Institute for Export Credits (GIEK), a government agency, which operates State guarantee schemes to promote Norwegian exports. Guarantees for exports of ships are handled under the general GIEK guarantee scheme. The guarantee premiums are based on a risk evaluation and should cover expected losses and administrative costs. GIEK is under an explicit obligation to break even in the long term. On 17 June 1999, the Norwegian Parliament decided to amend the scope of the guarantee scheme so as to include guarantees for credits for some domestic deliveries of ships, i.e. ships of owners registered in Norway which will have their income from foreign trade and/or the offshore sector. In the light of the characteristics of the guarantee scheme, the Authority has decided to consider it as not containing aid. 

For further information please contact Mr. Amund Utne (tel.: 286.18.50) or Mrs. Alexandra Antoniadis (tel.: 286.18.52).

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