The Norwegian state could be set to earn an extra 73 billion kroner from energy this year, according to new figures from interest group and employer organisation Energi Norge.
This year, the Norwegian state will spend up to 41 billion kroner providing subsidies to households to help them cover rising electricity prices.
When prices rise above 70 øre kWh, the government covers up to 90 percent of the bill. Last week, the government unveiled a raft of measures to help businesses cope with rising energy bills.
Figures from the estimated windfall show that the 73 billion kroner comes from 56 billion kroner in tax, three billion in VAT and 14 billion kroner in dividends from state-owned firms.
Despite income from high energy bills totalling considerably more than the government will pay to help consumers cope with bills, Energi Norge said the windfall was a good thing for the country.
“70 billion shows that here we cover the electricity support scheme for households and the business scheme. In addition, we provide the opportunity for the community to finance other welfare benefits. So this is good news for Norway,” Energi Norge’s managing director Knut Kroepelien told public broadcaster NRK.
Earlier this week, Norway’s parliamentary holiday was halted for the parties to debate energy policy. During the debate, over 90 proposals were tabled by opposition parties. Among the proposals were calls for increased support, with the government covering the bill when prices pass 50 øre kWh and a maximum price.