Norway pledges support for shipbuilding
Norway's minister for trade and industry says the country"s next budget will see increased support for its struggling shipbuilding industry.
Trond Giske was reported in local business press as saying that the industry will see some benefit out of the May 2010 budget, but has not revealed any details other than to say it could be through Innovation Norway or the country"s export guarantee credit agency, Giek.
Innovation Norway is a state-owned business set up to help cultivate and develop regional businesses around the country.
Giek managing director Wenche Nistad told Lloyd"s List towards the end of last year that without some form of support, some of the the country"s shipbuilders faced a complete loss of work and potential bankruptcy by the end of 2010.
The warning came after one privately owned yard went broke in 2009 and the orderbook of many others began to dry up. The majority of Norway"s remaining shipyards focus on building vessels for the offshore sector, the largest of which will have the hulls built overseas and the fitting out and specialist work being completed in Norway.
The largest shipbuilder in Norway, Korea-owned STX Europe, recently announced a number of specialised vessels it would be building for clients, with a portion of them being finished in Norway. The vessels all have the initial hull construction completed overseas, with some of the hulls being fitted out in Brattvaag.
The shipbuilder also announced towards the end of last year that one of its yards would be converted to do shiprepair and maintenance. It also said it would be be building a new shipbuilding facility in Brazil, where it already has one facility focused on the region"s offshore market.