New demands on sulphur emissions for shipping jeopardise Swedish economy

Page last reviewed/updated: 28/05/2012

An EU proposal regarding demands on sulphur emissions for shipping in the Baltic Sea is detrimental to the Swedish economy and its competitiveness.

“We all want to reduce sulphur emissions but we are of the opinion that a longer respite is necessary,” says the Swedish Forest Industries Federation's Mårten Larsson, senior vice president Forestry and Head of Industrial Policy. “At risk are thousands of jobs in the Swedish export industry and investments going to other countries. At the same time as the environmental problems are only moved.”

The proposal entails higher costs for the Swedish forestry industry of SEK 1.3 billion per year according to the Swedish Maritime Administration's calculations. The demands are to be unilaterally applied for the Baltic Sea, the North Sea and the English Channel (the SECA region) and will seriously damage the competitiveness of Swedish companies competing in a global market.

“Swedish forestry companies cannot be compensated for rising costs by raising prices to the customers because we mainly compete with countries beyond the Baltic Sea region, which are thus not affected by this decision,” says Mårten Larsson. “They will be able to continue operating with maritime fuel with 3.5-percent sulphur content. This entails the risk of them taking market shares, which means higher overall sulphur emissions.”

The proposal also risks for negative environmental consequences through an increase of road transports at the expense of shipping, with increased carbon dioxide emissions as a result.


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Mårten LarssonSkogsdirektör Chef näringspolitiska avdelningen+46(0)8-611 71 22