European Commission may cut gap between summer and winter time

Daylight Savings TimeDaylight Savings Time.Photo: Erik Johansen / NTB scanpix

The EU Commission proposed removing the annual shift between summer and winter time. Norway is looking into the situation and awaits the EU’s decision.

 

“It should be summer time all year round,” said President Jean-Claude Juncker on Friday according to AFP news agency.

The background to the standpoint is a comprehensive survey conducted by the EU. 84% said they no longer want to set the clock back and forth. Over 4.6 million people participated,which is a new record for this type of research. Three million of the answers came from Germany.

4.6 million people accounts for only 0.89% of the EU population,and participation varied greatly between countries.Juncker nevertheless believes that politicians should comply with the outcome reached among less that 1% of the European population.

“My recommendation to the Commission is that if you ask citizens about something, you must do what the citizens say.

The prime minister awaits decision

The Commission will, within a few weeks, prepare a proposal that must be considered by the European Parliament and the member states.

If the EU abolishes the divide between summer and winter time,the decision will initially also apply to Norway.

“We’ll have to wait and see what they conclude. But the process in the EU makes us discuss this,” said Minister of Industry, Torbjørn Røe Isaksen of Høyre (H) to NTB news.

As the minister of justice, it is he who is responsible for the time here in Norway.

“An important argument for summer time in Norway has been that business is following the same rules as in other countries,” Røe Isaksen pointed out.

Growing involvement

‘’This is something that attracts involvement for very many. It engages both grandparents, like myself, and people who are concerned with their sleep patterns. In addition, bigger things, such as productivity in society, are included,” the minister said.

He added that he himself does not have strong opinions about the matter either personally or politically.

If the EU decides that it is time to remove the scheme, the change may come into force by 2020 or 2021. EU Transport Commissioner, Violeta Bulc, said the Commission’s proposal will mean that each member country can choose whether to introduce permanent summer or winter time.

The position of the clock back and forth has been going on for a long time.The scheme was introduced in some European countries during the First World War.

The purpose was to save energy.

 

© NTB scanpix / #Norway Today

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