Press release | Date: 14/10/2019| No: 136/19
“The Government plans to continue its efforts to develop our nation and build a sustainable welfare society. This requires modern infrastructure, with efficient and safe transport options. We continue our efforts to improve the transport sector, thus contributing to an easier day-to-day life for most people, reinforcing the competitive advantages of our nation’s industries and developing the regions where people live and work. The Government is proposing to allocate NOK 75.4 billion to transport in 2020. This is an increase of more than 80 percent compared to 2013,” says Minister of Transport Jon Georg Dale, in connection with the Government presenting its National Budget proposal for 2020.
Increased maintenance and new roads
“In order to make it possible for people to live and work in every part of our nation, we need good roads. That is why the Government has made the maintenance of existing roads and investments in new roads a priority. For the sixth year in a row, we are presenting a budget that will reduce maintenance lags for our national road network after decades of increasing lags. In the budget proposal for next year, road investments total NOK 38 billion. This is an increase by more than 80 percent compared to 2013,” the Minister for Transport says.
Our roads also need protection from rockfall. The Government is therefore proposing to allocate almost NOK 2 billion for rockfall protection of our national and county roads. This will make roads better and safer for both industry stakeholders and private individuals.
The standard of our county roads needs improving. In the National Budget for 2020, the Government is prioritising NOK 100 million to a new grant scheme for county roads critical to commercial transport. In addition, the Government is earmarking NOK 1.5 billion of its allocations to the counties for upgrades to and renewal of county roads.
Increased investments in railways
“We continue our efforts to elevate Norwegian railways to a state-of-the-art, efficient transport system as an environmentally-friendly and efficient option for people in their daily commute. In the National Budget for 2020, we propose allocating NOK 26.8 billion to the railway. This is an increase of 88 percent compared to 2013,” Dale says.
The proposed allocations will, among other things, go toward investments in nine new trains, start-up of a major new project on the Dovre Line, electrification of the Trønder and Meråker Lines, increased activity in several ongoing projects, and a better train service. Improvements include better network coverage, additional sleeper cars and more frequent departures.
Technology is essential to transport and the environment
“In recent years, we have been able to reduce emissions from the transport sector. This trend needs to continue. That is why we are facilitating for increased use of environmentally friendly technology and alternative fuels, and we are making it easier for people to choose environmentally friendly options,” the Minister for Transport says.
Technology is also an important factor in shipping. Maritime technology will strengthen Norway’s position as a seafaring nation and contribute to maritime industrial development.
Safe passage for both people and gods
Navigation and safety at sea are key priorities. With this budget proposal, the Government will have reduced the maintenance lag for navigation systems by more than half, from more than NOK 1.4 billion in 2014 to less than NOK 700 million, which is the expected level in 2020.
Furthermore, the Government is planning to allocate NOK 50 million to the incentive programme to encourage more transport by sea.
Increased investments in air traffic safety
The Government is proposing to increase allocations to the Civil Aviation Authority by NOK 15 million. These funds will primarily go toward the Civil Aviation Authority’s initiatives promoting the safe use of drones and the public benefit from of their development.
“We need a safe, forward-thinking and efficient aviation sector in Norway. We are making the Civil Aviation Authority better equipped to handle the challenges of tomorrow. In the National Budget for 2020, the Government is strengthening the Civil Aviation Authority’s activities relating to unmanned aviation, i.e. drones, and safety,” Dale says.