Cameron Norway Visit Will See Energy-Company Expansion in U.K.

Norwegian energy companies will announce plans to expand in the U.K. during a visit to Oslo by Prime Minister David Cameron, the first by a British leader in 26 years, the premier’s office said.

The plans will lead to the creation of 1,600 jobs in the U.K. and investment worth tens of billions of pounds, Cameron’s office said in an e-mailed statement yesterday, without giving details of the companies involved. Cameron, who arrived in Oslo last night, and Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg will also reach an agreement today to improve energy ties between the two nations.

“Norway supplies over a quarter of U.K. entire energy needs and is a major investor right across our energy sector,” Cameron said in the statement. “I hope that my visit to Oslo will help secure affordable energy supplies for decades to come and enhance investment between our two countries.”

Cameron meets executives today from 10 companies including Aker Solutions ASA, Norway’s biggest maker of oil platforms, Statoil ASA, the country’s biggest oil and gas producer, and Fred Olsen Energy ASA. British companies have invested about 13 billion pounds ($20 billion) in the Nordic country’s energy industry, Cameron’s office said.

Britain, which produced less gas than it imported last year for the first time, got 21 percent of its fuel through the Langeled pipeline from Norway last quarter, an all-time high, National Grid Plc data show.

‘Reciprocal Investment’

Today’s agreement will seek to improve “collaboration on affordable long-term gas supply, more reciprocal investment in oil, gas and renewable energies and more commercial deals creating thousands of new jobs and adding billions to our economies,” Cameron said.

Last year, the U.K. increased tax allowances for some North Sea project investments, prompting Statoil to resume work on the Mariner field development. Statoil had frozen the $10 billion plan to develop operations in the North Sea.

Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne raised taxes on oil-production profits to 62 percent from 50 percent in last year’s budget to pay for a lower duty on gasoline.

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