The proposal is included in the party’s 2030 green plan. Party leader Jakob Ellemann-Jensen said the plan would “enable massive climate investments without taxes being raised.”
“We want to sell the state’s share in the Ørsted wind farm business. We want that because the time has passed for state ownership of such a large part of the company.
“That decision offers some possibilities. We’d link that with Venstre’s bid on what we should spend the funds on, which we have set aside in a large green fund before the summer holidays together with a number of other parties,” Ellemann-Jensen pointed out.
No longer part of Denmark’s critical infrastructure?
The plan states that “Ørsted is no longer critical infrastructure.”
“A number of divestments and a clear strategic focus have meant that the business is no longer part of Denmark’s critical infrastructure.
“By contrast, Ørsted’s main focus by far is the operation and construction of wind farms worldwide, where Ørsted competes on fully commercial terms,” the party writes in its 2030 plan.
However, Venstre wants Ørsted to keep its Danish power plants, which must remain state-owned.
Today, the state owns 50.1 percent of Ørsted, which was previously called Dong Energy, but changed its name to Ørsted in 2017.
The money from the sale of Ørsted’s wind turbine business would be invested in climate and nature-related projects, Vestre’s plan states.
Of the 60 billion kroner, 37.5 billion kroner would be set aside for green investments up to 2030.
For example, 8 billion kroner would be set aside for “cleaner drinking water,” while 8.5 billion kroner would be earmarked for climate and energy renovations of private homes.
A total of 15 billion kroner would go to research and development, “which would make Denmark climate neutral by 2050”.
Reactions to the proposal
Minister for Climate, Energy and Utilities Dan Jørgensen of the Social Democrats (S) calls the sale of parts of Ørsted “unreasonable,” adding that it would come at “an unreasonable time.”
“I think it is a very unwise proposal in a time when there is so much uncertainty in the world. On the contrary, we have to protect the important energy infrastructure we have,” he said.
He believes the wind farm business is a “very important part of Ørsted’s business.” At the same time, he points out that it would be “completely impossible to control who buys it.”
The Liberal Party’s proposal was also met with sharp criticism from the Socialist People’s Party (SF) leader Pia Olsen Dyhr.
“It’s close to the craziest thing I’ve heard in a long time,” she wrote on Twitter.
“Ørsted has been a driving force in the green transition, partly because the state has been the main shareholder.”
The SF left Helle Thorning-Schmidt’s government in 2014 after it allowed Goldman Sachs to become a co-owner of the then Dong Energy.
The Moderates also reject the idea of selling Ørsted’s wind farm business.
“A definite ‘no thanks’ from our end,” parliamentary candidate Jakob Engel-Schmidt wrote on Twitter.