A new project has been proposed by Gassco, a Norwegian gas transporter, to establish a pipeline in the Scandinavian region to supply natural gas to western Sweden, Denmark and eastern Norway.

According to the BBC, Gassco has already signed deals with an additional 14 firms to join a Scandinavian consortium to build the pipeline for a possible $1.1 billion.

Seven companies have currently agreed to own 70% of such a pipeline, while another nine have undertaken to pay for the right to use it, said vice president Thor Otto Lohne at Gassco. They have thereby demonstrated a willingness to invest in the infrastructure which can ensure supplies of feedstock and energy for Norwegian industry.

A long-term investment in natural gas will do well for Norway’s economy.

Pre-engineering of the new pipeline system will begin now, with a target to take a final development decision in 2009. If on schedule, the pipeline is anticipated to start supplying gas to the Scandinavian countries in 2012.

Cited in the BBC, the project was approved by Odd Roger Enoksen, the Norwegian minister of petroleum and energy, which will support the construction of the pipeline.