New oil minister named in Norway

Norwegian government has appointed Tina Bru as the country’s new Minister of Petroleum and Energy, replacing Sylvi Listhaug.

Tina Bru in place in her new office in the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy. Photo: Margrete Løbben Hanssen / OED (the image has been cropped)

Listhaug has only been in the office for a month. Her appointment to the minister of petroleum role was made in December 2019. Before that, she had held a position in Norway’s Ministry of Health and Care Services.

Listhaug, a member of the Progress Party, was dismissed from her role at the petroleum ministry last Friday, January 24, 2020, following her party’s decision to leave the coalition government. Bru, a member of the Conservative Party, was appointed to the role on the same day.

Commenting on her appointment, Tina Bru, the new minister, said: “I am very much looking forward to taking on the duties of Minister of Petroleum and Energy. After serving on the Energy and Environment Committee for six years, it will be exciting to lead the ministry that manages our shared energy resources. The petroleum industry is Norway’s most important industry, and I live in a county that employs several thousand people in the industry. I am also very much looking forward to working with renewable energy, which will play an important role in the transition to a low-emission society.”

According to Reuters, in 2018, Bru, who sits on parliament’s energy and environment committee, convinced the ruling Conservatives to allow the country’s $1.1 trillion sovereign wealth fund to invest in unlisted renewables projects such as solar parks and wind farms.

It is worth reminding that the Norwegian government has recently awarded 69 production licenses on the Norwegian continental shelf to 28 oil and gas companies as part of the Award in Pre-Defined Areas 2019 (APA 2019). Of the 69 production licences, 13 are in the Barents Sea, 23 are in the Norwegian Sea, and 33 are in the North Sea.

The biggest winners in the latest licensing round were Equinor, Vår Energi, and Aker BP with  23, 17, and 15 awarded licenses, respectively.

Offshore Energy Today Staff

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