Mowi decides not to appeal salmon tax ruling

Editorial Staff

Norwegian salmon farming giant Mowi has opted not to appeal a court decision rejecting its lawsuit against the new salmon tax.

The Hordaland District Court dismissed Mowi’s lawsuit earlier this spring, challenging the tax imposed on the aquaculture industry.

Mowi did not submit an appeal before the deadline, effectively ending the legal proceedings for now.

“The state has succeeded in establishing that the parliament’s decision on the resource rent tax on aquaculture cannot be challenged on general grounds, which Mowi now accepts. This is an important principled clarification,” said Norwegian government attorney Fredrik Sejersted in a statement to media outlet E24.

Sejersted noted that it remains to be seen whether Mowi will contest the specific tax assessment decision it will receive in due course.

“In our view, it is clear that the resource rent tax is fully compatible with the Constitution, EEA law, and the European Convention on Human Rights,” added Sejersted.

The court’s decision does not impact the validity of the salmon tax itself, which remains in effect. The ruling solely addressed whether the lawsuit could proceed.

Mowi’s lawsuit primarily argued that the tax’s base deduction of NOK 70 million ($6.58 million/€6.09 million) is discriminatory and violates EEA regulations.

Mowi’s Communications Director Ola Helge Hjetland stated in a text message to E24 that the case in the district court was purely procedural, concerning the timing of when they could challenge the legality of the base deduction in the new resource rent model.

“We have chosen not to appeal the district court’s decision as there would be no ruling from the Court of Appeal before a tax assessment is issued, and we can proceed with the lawsuit regardless. So this changes nothing,” wrote Hjetland.

The deduction was introduced to protect smaller players, ensuring that companies with the highest profits pay the resource rent tax. At the same time, the deduction also reduces the tax base for larger companies.


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