EUROPAM

European Public Accountability Mechanisms

Norway

Country score (European Average*)
  • 39(66) Political Financing
  • 29(50) Financial Disclosure
  • 27(40) Conflict of Interest
  • 60(56) Freedom of Information
  • 63(65) Public Procurement

Country Facts

IncomeHigh
GNI per capita (2011 PPP $)67319.95
Population, total5232929.00
Urban population (% of total)80.73
Internet users (per 100 people)97.30
Life expectancy at birth (years)82.10
Mean years of schooling (years)12.7
Global Competitiveness Index5.4
Sources: World Bank, UNDP, WEF.

Political Financing

The Political Parties Act (2005, amended 2015) is the main law regulating the financing of political parties in Norway.

There are some limits on the private income of political parties in Norway. There are bans on donations from foreign interests and anonymous donors. There are only bans on corporations that are partly owned by the government and no bans on donations from trade unions. There are no limits on the amount that can be donated to parties.

There is public funding available for political parties and it is allocated on the basis of the share of votes in the previous election and the representation in the elected body. There are no conditions on how that funding may be spent. There are no provisions on subsidized media access but there is indirect public funding available in the form of tax relief.

For regulations on spending there are no bans on state resources being used in favour or against a political party or candidate and there are no limits on what parties and candidates can spend.

Parties are required to report on their finances. Reports must disclose finances in relation to the election campaign, the identity of anonymous donors and must be made public. Reports are overseen by the Political Parties Act Committee and the Party Auditing Committee. There are sanctions for those breaching the provisions of the law in the form of fines, the loss of public funding, forfeiture and sanctions under the criminal law.


Quantitative Data

Primary Metric

2012201520162017Trend
Bans and limits on private income28282828
Public funding38383838
Regulations on spending0000
Reporting, oversight and sanctions83929292

Values lie in range between 0 and 100, higher values implying higher legislation comprehensiveness


Qualitative Data

We are frequently reviewing and refining our data, so in case you notice any mistake in our assessment, feel free to send us an email by clicking the button ()

Bans and limits on private income

Bans on donations from foreign interests

Is there a ban on donations from foreign interests to political parties? Yes. Political parties and party units cannot receive donations from: b) foreign donors, which means private persons who are not Norwegian citizens.‌.‌.‌or legal entities registered abroad (Section 17a(2)(b) Political Parties Act, 2005, amended 2015)
Is there a ban on donations from foreign interests to candidates? No. Absent from legal framework

Bans on corporate donations

Is there a ban on corporate donations to political parties? No. Absent from legal framework
Is there a ban on corporate donations to candidates? No. Absent from legal framework
Is there a ban on donations from corporations with government contracts to political parties? No. Absent from legal framework
Is there a ban on donations from corporations of partial government ownership to political parties? Yes. Political parties and party units cannot receive donations from: a) legal entities controlled by the state or another public authority (Section 17a(2) Political Parties Act, 2005, amended 2015)
Is there a ban on donations from corporations with government contracts to candidates? No. Absent from legal framework
Is there a ban on donations from corporations of partial government ownership to candidates? No. Absent from legal framework

Bans on donations from trade unions

Is there a ban on donations from Trade Unions to political parties? No. Absent from legal framework
Is there a ban on donations from Trade Unions to candidates? No. Absent from legal framework

Bans on anonymous donations

Is there a ban on anonymous donations to political parties? Yes. (1) Political parties and party units cannot receive donations if the donor is unknown to the party (anonymous donations). (Section 17a(1) Political Parties Act, 2005, amended 2015)
Is there a ban on anonymous donations to candidates? No. Absent from legal framework

Other bans on donations

Is there a ban on state resources being given to or received by political parties or candidates (excluding regulated public funding)? Yes. ".‌.‌.‌Section 17, paragraph 3 Political Parties Act prohibits both donations from public agencies (i.‌e.‌ legal entities under the control of the state or another public agency).‌.‌.‌" (Section 17a (2)(a) Political Parties Act, 2005, amended 2015)
Is there a ban on any other form of donation? No. Absent from legal framework

Donation limits

Is there a limit on the amount a donor can contribute to a political party over a time period (not election specific)? No. Absent from legal framework
Is there a limit on the amount a donor can contribute to a political party in relation to an election? No. Absent from legal framework
Is there a limit on the amount a donor can contribute to a candidate? No. Absent from legal framework

Public funding 

Eligibility criteria for direct public funding to political parties

Eligibility criteria for direct public funding to political parties: Share of votes in previous election Yes. The grant paid to the elected groups in the county councils and the municipal councils shall be paid proportionally according to the votes the party won at the election. (2) The vote support is paid as an equal amount in kroner (NOK) to each vote received at the last general election. The basic support is paid as an equal amount in kroner to parties that at the last general election received at least 2.5% of the votes on a national basis or that had at least one representative elected to the Storting. Of the total support, 9/10 is distributed as vote support and 1/10 as basic support. (Section 10(2) & 11(2) Political Parties Act, 2005, amended 2015)
Eligibility criteria for direct public funding to political parties: Representation in elected body Yes. The basic support is paid as an equal amount in kroner to parties that at the last general election received at least 2.5% of the votes on a national basis or that had at least one representative elected to the Storting. (Section 11(2) Political Parties Act, 2005, amended 2015)
Eligibility criteria for direct public funding to political parties: Participation in election No. Absent from legal framework
Eligibility criteria for direct public funding to political parties: Number of candidates No. Absent from legal framework
Eligibility criteria for direct public funding to political parties: Share of seats in previous election No. Absent from legal framework
Eligibility criteria for direct public funding to political parties: Share of votes in next election No. Absent from legal framework
Eligibility criteria for direct public funding to political parties: Registration as a political party No. Absent from legal framework
Eligibility criteria for direct public funding to political parties: Share of seats in next election No. Absent from legal framework
Eligibility criteria for direct public funding to political parties: Number of members No. Absent from legal framework
Eligibility criteria for direct public funding to political parties: Other No. Absent from legal framework

Allocation calculations for direct public funding to political parties

Allocation calculations for direct public funding to political parties: Proportional to votes received No. Absent from legal framework
Allocation calculations for direct public funding to political parties: Equal Yes. (2) The vote support is paid as an equal amount in kroner to each vote received at the last general election (Section 11(2) Political Parties Act, 2005, amended 2015)
Allocation calculations for direct public funding to political parties: Proportional to seats received No. Absent from legal framework
Allocation calculations for direct public funding to political parties: Flat rate by votes received No. Absent from legal framework
Allocation calculations for direct public funding to political parties: Share of expenses reimbursed No. Absent from legal framework
Allocation calculations for direct public funding to political parties: Proportional to candidates fielded No. Absent from legal framework
Allocation calculations for direct public funding to political parties: Number of members No. Absent from legal framework
Allocation calculations for direct public funding to political parties: Other No. Absent from legal framework

Earmarking provisions for direct public funding to political parties

Earmarking provisions for direct public funding to political parties: Campaign spending No. Absent from legal framework
Earmarking provisions for direct public funding to political parties: Ongoing party activities No. Absent from legal framework
Earmarking provisions for direct public funding to political parties: Intra-party institution No. Absent from legal framework
Earmarking provisions for direct public funding to political parties: Other No. Absent from legal framework

Allocation criteria for free or subsidized access to media for political parties

Allocation criteria for free or subsidized access to media for political parties: Equal No. Absent from legal framework
Allocation criteria for free or subsidized access to media for political parties: Number of candidates No. Absent from legal framework
Allocation criteria for free or subsidized access to media for political parties: Share of seats No. Absent from legal framework
Allocation criteria for free or subsidized access to media for political parties: Share of votes in preceding election No. Absent from legal framework
Allocation criteria for free or subsidized access to media for political parties: Other No. Absent from legal framework
Are there provisions for free or subsidized access to media for candidates? No. Absent from legal framework

Are there provisions for any other form of indirect public funding?

Provisions for any other form of indirect public funding: Premises for campaign meetings No. Absent from legal framework
Provisions for any other form of indirect public funding: Space for campaign materials No. Absent from legal framework
Provisions for any other form of indirect public funding: Tax relief Yes. Norway exempts from income taxation any legal person that does not have a for profit purpose (...) Political parties, trade unions and trade associations are classified as not for profit and tax exempt organisations. (Income Tax Act 1999, Sections 2-32)
Provisions for any other form of indirect public funding: Free or subsidised transport No. Absent from legal framework
Provisions for any other form of indirect public funding: Free or subsidised postage cost No. Absent from legal framework
Provisions for any other form of indirect public funding: Other No. Absent from legal framework
Is the provision of direct public funding to political parties related to gender equality among candidates? No. Absent from legal framework
Are there provisions for other financial advantages to encourage gender equality in political parties? No. Absent from legal framework

Regulations on spending 

Is there a ban on vote buying? No. Absent from legal framework
Are there bans on state resources being used in favour or against a political party or candidate? No. Absent from legal framework
Are there limits on the amount a political party can spend? No. Absent from legal framework
Are there limits on the amount a candidate can spend? No. Absent from legal framework

Reporting, oversight and sanctions 

Reporting standards

Do political parties have to report regularly on their finances? Yes. (2) Parties and party units mentioned in the first subsection must submit annual reports about income and expenditures in the period from 1 January to 31 December, as well as of assets and liabilities as at 31 December. The report must at the latest be submitted five months after the end of the accounting year. (3) Political parties or units of political parties whose total income during the year is less than 12,000 kroner after the deduction of all public grants, are exempted from the obligation to keep accounts, the bookkeeping obligation and the reporting obligation in the first and second subsection. These parties are obliged to submit a declaration (simplified report) that their income for the year has been below this level. The same provisions of the Act also apply to such declarations as to reports pursuant to the second subsection. (Section 18(2) & (3) Political Parties Act, 2005, amended 2015)
Do political parties have to report on their finances in relation to election campaigns? Yes. If parties receive donations above 10,000 kroner during election years, they must file separate reports. (Section 18(4) Political Parties Act, 2005, amended 2015)
Do candidates have to report on their campaign finances? No. Only political parties report
Is information in reports from political parties and/​or candidates to be made public? Yes. Section 22(2) "2.‌ The central register shall collate the information concerning the party and party unit's reports and make this available to the public in an appropriate manner, for example by electronic means.‌" (Section 22(2) Political Parties Act, 2005, amended 2015)
Must reports from political parties and/​or candidates reveal the identity of donors? Yes. (1) If during the period a donor has made one or more donations to the party's head organisation to a total value of 35 000 kroner or more, the value of the donation and the identity of the donor shall be reported separately. This also applies to donations to party units at the county council level to a total value of 23 000 kroner or more, and to donations to party units at the municipal level to a total value of 12 000 kroner or more. Donations to the parties' youth organisations are governed by the rules for donations to the parent party at a corresponding level. (Section 20(1) Political Parties Act, 2005, amended 2015)
Institutions receiving financial reports from political parties and/​or candidates
Institutions receiving financial reports from political parties and/​or candidates: Electoral Management Board No. Absent from legal framework
Institutions receiving financial reports from political parties and/​or candidates: Auditing agency No. Absent from legal framework
Institutions receiving financial reports from political parties and/​or candidates: Ministry No. Absent from legal framework
Institutions receiving financial reports from political parties and/​or candidates: Special institution No. Absent from legal framework
Institutions receiving financial reports from political parties and/​or candidates: Court No. Absent from legal framework
Institutions receiving financial reports from political parties and/​or candidates: Other Yes. Reports are submitted to the central register (Statistics Norway) (Section 21(3) Political Parties Act, 2005, amended 2015)

Political finance oversight

Is it specified that a particular institution(s) is responsible for examining financial reports and/​or investigating violations?
Institution responsible for examining financial reports and/or investigating violations: Court No. Absent from legal framework
Institution responsible for examining financial reports and/or investigating violations: Ministry No. Absent from legal framework
Institution responsible for examining financial reports and/or investigating violations: Auditing agency No. Absent from legal framework
Institution responsible for examining financial reports and/or investigating violations: Electoral Management Body No. Absent from legal framework
Institution responsible for examining financial reports and/or investigating violations: Institution for this purpose Yes. The Political Parties Act Committee and the Party Auditing Committee. 24 (2) The Political Parties Act Committee is granted the authority to: a) interpret the rules in this Act and in regulations issued on the basis of this Act; b) control compliance with the funding provisions of this Act; c) make decisions about the use of administrative sanctions and confiscationsd) make decisions on appeals regarding registration, cf. section 8 e) make decisions on appeals of decisions on the awarding of public grants, cf. section 15 (3) The Political Parties Act Committee can demand that the party or party unit presents all documentation that is significant for compliance with the obligations in chapter 4 of this Act and that the Committee finds reason to examine specially. (4) If the Political Parties Act Committee finds it necessary, the party or party unit's compliance with its duties in chapter 4 can be controlled. This control is carried out by a specially appointed supervisory body, the Party Auditing Committee. The Party Auditing Committee can demand that the party or party unit presents all documentation that is significant to the aforementioned issue. Issues related to auditing activities that the Party Auditing Committee believes may violate the Auditors Act or Section 21a of this Act, must be reported to the Financial Supervisory Authority of Norway. (5) In years other than election years, the Party Auditing Committee must, on request from the Political Parties Act Committee, conduct routine controls of the compliance of parties or party units subject to reporting obligations with the obligations in chapter 4. The control must be politically neutral and cannot include areas that touch on the party or party unit's independence or political freedom of action. The Party Auditing Committee must guide the party or party unit in its understanding of the obligations in chapter 4. (6) Section 6-1 of the Auditors Act about the duty of confidentiality does not prevent the Party Auditing Committeefrom presenting information relevant to compliance with this Act or with Sections §§ 387 to 389 of the General Civil Penal Code (1902) to the Political Parties Act Committee. (7) Anyone who performs services or work for the Political Parties Act Committeeor the Party Auditing Committee is required to prevent others from gaining access to, or knowledge of, the knowledge they gain about internal party issues as a result of their service or work. Section 13a(1) no. 1 to 3 and Section 13b(1) no. 2 to 6 of thePublic Administration Act nevertheless applies (Section 24 Political Parties Act, 2005, amended 2015)
Institution responsible for examining financial reports and/or investigating violations: Other No. Absent from legal framework
Other institutions with a formal role in political finance oversight
Institutions with a formal role in political finance oversight: Court Yes. The Ministry of Government Administration and Reform can recommend that government grants to a party are withheld. Decisions (by the the Political Parties Act Committee) to do so, can be challenged to courts (Section 28 Political Parties Act, 2005, amended 2015)
Institutions with a formal role in political finance oversight: Ministry Yes. The Ministry of Government Administration and Reform can recommend that government grants to a party are withheld. Decisions (by the the Political Parties Act Committee) to do so, can be challenged to courts (Section 28 Political Parties Act, 2005, amended 2015)
Institutions with a formal role in political finance oversight: Auditing agency Yes. The Party Auditing Committee can demand that the party or party unit presents all documentation that is significant to the aforementioned issue. Issues related to auditing activities that the Party Auditing Committee believes may violate the Auditors Act or Section 21a of this Act, must be reported to the Financial Supervisory Authority of Norway. (Section 24(4) Political Parties Act, 2005, amended 2015)
Institutions with a formal role in political finance oversight: EMB No. Absent from legal framework
Institutions with a formal role in political finance oversight: Institution for this purpose No. Absent from legal framework
Institutions with a formal role in political finance oversight: Other No. Absent from legal framework
Sanctions for political finance infractions
Sanctions for political finance infractions: Fines Yes. Section 28.‌ 1.‌ In the event of violations of the rules in chapter 4, the Political Parties Act Committee determines by how much the party's public grant is to be reduced.‌ A first violation of limited scope can be sanctioned by a formal warning.‌ Section 29.‌ 1.‌ For violations of the provisions in section 17a, first to fourth subsection, the Political Parties Act Committee shall make a decision on the confiscation of up to the full value of the donation that has been received illegally.‌ Section 30.‌ 1.‌ Whoever intentionally or by gross negligence gives materially incorrect information in connection with the reporting obligation in chapter 4 will be penalised by fines or imprisonment for up to two years.‌ (Section 28, 29 & 30 Political Parties Act, 2005, amended 2015)
Sanctions for political finance infractions: Loss of public funding Yes. Section 28.‌ 1.‌ In the event of violations of the rules in chapter 4, the Political Parties Act Committee determines by how much the party's public grant is to be reduced.‌ A first violation of limited scope can be sanctioned by a formal warning.‌ Section 29.‌ 1.‌ For violations of the provisions in section 17a, first to fourth subsection, the Political Parties Act Committee shall make a decision on the confiscation of up to the full value of the donation that has been received illegally.‌ Section 30.‌ 1.‌ Whoever intentionally or by gross negligence gives materially incorrect information in connection with the reporting obligation in chapter 4 will be penalised by fines or imprisonment for up to two years.‌ (Section 28, 29 & 30 Political Parties Act, 2005, amended 2015)
Sanctions for political finance infractions: Penal/Criminal Yes. Chapter 6.‌ Section 28.‌ 1.‌ In the event of violations of the rules in chapter 4, the Political Parties Act Committee determines by how much the party's public grant is to be reduced.‌ A first violation of limited scope can be sanctioned by a formal warning.‌ Section 29.‌ 1.‌ For violations of the provisions in section 17a, first to fourth subsection, the Political Parties Act Committee shall make a decision on the confiscation of up to the full value of the donation that has been received illegally.‌ Section 30.‌ 1.‌ Whoever intentionally or by gross negligence gives materially incorrect information in connection with the reporting obligation in chapter 4 will be penalised by fines or imprisonment for up to two years.‌ (Section 28, 29 & 30 Political Parties Act, 2005, amended 2015)
Sanctions for political finance infractions: Forfeiture Yes. Chapter 6.‌ Section 28.‌ 1.‌ In the event of violations of the rules in chapter 4, the Political Parties Act Committee determines by how much the party's public grant is to be reduced.‌ A first violation of limited scope can be sanctioned by a formal warning.‌ Section 29.‌ 1.‌ For violations of the provisions in section 17a, first to fourth subsection, the Political Parties Act Committee shall make a decision on the confiscation of up to the full value of the donation that has been received illegally.‌ Section 30.‌ 1.‌ Whoever intentionally or by gross negligence gives materially incorrect information in connection with the reporting obligation in chapter 4 will be penalised by fines or imprisonment for up to two years.‌ (Section 28, 29 & 30 Political Parties Act, 2005, amended 2015)
Sanctions for political finance infractions: Deregistration of party No. Absent from legal framework
Sanctions for political finance infractions: Loss of elected office No. Absent from legal framework
Sanctions for political finance infractions: Suspension of political party No. Absent from legal framework
Sanctions for political finance infractions: Loss of nomination of candidate No. Absent from legal framework
Sanctions for political finance infractions: Loss of political rights No. Absent from legal framework
Sanctions for political finance infractions: Other No. Absent from legal framework

Qualitative data for 2017


Legislation

Political Parties Act, 2005, amended 2015 (Norwegian)pdf
Income Tax Act, 1999, amended 2015 (Norwegian)pdf

Financial Disclosure

Norway’s Ministers and MPs face the same disclosure requirements based on the Register of Member’s Appointments and Economic Interests (2012). These include real estate that is not for private use, providers of cash or movable assets, outside employers, and business interests that exceed on percent of a company’s total capital. Civil Servants’ only disclosure requirement is informing the superior in case of a possible conflict of interests during decision-making. This is part of the Public Administration Act (1967). In addition, Ministers, MPs, and Civil Servants must disclose any position obtained within the year after leaving public service. Family members are not included in any disclosures.

All officials make their declarations ad hoc whenever a change occurs. In case of non- or late-filling, Ministers and Civil Servants face fines while no sanctions are specified for MPs. Declarations by Ministers and MPs are received by the Register of Member’s Appointments and Economic Interests with no specification of a verifying or enforcement body. For Civil Servants on the other hand, the Quarantine Committee serves as depository body, while the superior serves as an enforcement body. The statements made by Ministers and MPs are made publicly available on the Parliamentary website within 20 days. No such rule applies to Civil Servants.

(Note: The Head of State is a monarch and thus exempted from conflicts of interests laws.)


Quantitative Data

Primary Metric

2012201520162017Trend
Disclosure items6181817
Filing frequency31383838
Sanctions33333333
Monitoring and Oversight31191919
Public access to declarations25383838

Alternative Metric

2012201520162017Trend
Head of State0000
Ministers29505050
Members of Parliament39373737
Civil servants34292929

Values lie in range between 0 and 100, higher values implying higher legislation comprehensiveness


Qualitative Data

We are frequently reviewing and refining our data, so in case you notice any mistake in our assessment, feel free to send us an email by clicking the button ()

Head of State

Disclosure items

Spouses and children included in disclosure No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Income and Assets
Real estate No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Movable assets No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Cash No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Loans and Debts No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Income from outside employment/assets No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Incompatibilities
Gifts received as a public official No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Private firm ownership and/or stock holdings No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Ownership of state-owned enterprises (SOEs) No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Holding government contracts No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Board member, advisor, or company officer of private firm No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Post-employment No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Simultaneously holding policy-making position and policy-executing position No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Participating in official decision-making processes that affect private interests No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Concurrent employment of family members in public sector No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.

Filing frequency

Filing required upon taking office No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Filing required upon leaving office No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Filing required annually No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Ad hoc filing required upon change in assets or conflicts of interest No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.

Sanctions

Sanctions stipulated for late filing (fines, administrative, and/or criminal) No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Sanctions stipulated for non-filing (fines, administrative, and/or criminal) No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Sanctions stipulated for false disclosure (fines, administrative, and/or criminal) No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.

Monitoring and Oversight

Depository body explicitly identified No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Enforcement body explicitly identified No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Some agency assigned responsibility for verifying submission No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Some agency assigned responsibility for verifying accuracy No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.

Public access to declarations

Public availability No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Timing of information release specified No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Location(s) of access specified No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Cost of access specified No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.

Ministers

Disclosure items

Spouses and children included in disclosure No. Absent from legal framework.
Income and Assets
Real estate Yes. Real property that is of considerable value and that is used for business purposes. This also includes real property that belongs to a company that the Member him or herself owns or part-owns. The designation of the real property and the municipality it is situated in shall be stated. Property that is essentially residential or holiday accommodation shall not be registered in this provision. The same applies to farmhouses and work buildings on a farm. (Section 8 Regulation on Register of Member’s Appointments and Economic Interests (2008, amended 2012))
Movable assets No. Absent from legal framework.
Cash Yes. The name of companies, organizations, institutions or individuals that provide the Member in question with financial support, including material assets, secretarial assistance and the like, over and above the means made disposable by the Storting. (Section 7 Regulation on Register of Member’s Appointments and Economic Interests (2008, amended 2012))
Loans and Debts No. Absent from legal framework.
Income from outside employment/assets Yes. Paid employment or contract work that is undertaken in addition to the individual’s role as Member of the Storting. The position/contract and employer/contractor shall be stated. Distinct reference shall be made if individual jobs, or several jobs within the same calendar year for the same contactor, have provided remuneration of more than NOK 50 000. (Section 3 and 4 Regulation on Register of Member’s Appointments and Economic Interests (2008, amended 2012))
Incompatibilities
Gifts received as a public official Yes. Gifts or other financial benefits of a value of more than NOK 2 000, received from domestic or foreign donors, when the gift/benefit is in connection with the individual’s work as a Member. The name of the donor, the nature of the benefit and when the contribution was made shall be stated. (Section 11 Regulation on Register of Member’s Appointments and Economic Interests (2008, amended 2012))
Private firm ownership and/or stock holdings Yes . Business interests (shares, stakes, etc.) that exceed one percent of a company’s total capital or the National Insurance basic amount, and which the Member in question owns him or herself, either directly or indirectly through another company. The company’s name shall be stated. Dividends from the above shall not be stated. (Section 9 Regulation on Register of Member’s Appointments and Economic Interests (2008, amended 2012))
Ownership of state-owned enterprises (SOEs) No. Absent from legal framework.
Holding government contracts No. Absent from legal framework.
Board member, advisor, or company officer of private firm Yes. Independent income-producing business carried out in addition to parliamentary work, including work as a farmer, doctor, lawyer, journalist, commissioned consultancy work. The nature of the business shall be stated.All remunerated activities as stated in the first paragraph, and which the Member personally takes part in, shall be encompassed, including those where the business or job is formally organized through a company owned or part-owned by the Member him or herself. 
 (Section 3 Regulation on Register of Member’s Appointments and Economic Interests (2008, amended 2012))
Post-employment Yes. Public officials are required to disclose new positions or offices obtained outside central government or business within one year after leaving office as a politician. Employment, contract work or similar agreements with future employers or contractors, even if the employment, contract or job will not take effect until after the Member in question has stepped down from the Storting. (Article 4 of the Guidelines on quarantine and prohibition to work with specific areas when transferring to a new position outside the central government (2005) Section 6 Regulation on Register of Member’s Appointments and Economic Interests (2008, amended 2012))
Simultaneously holding policy-making position and policy-executing position No. Absent from legal framework.
Participating in official decision-making processes that affect private interests No. Absent from legal framework.
Concurrent employment of family members in public sector No. Absent from legal framework.

Filing frequency

Filing required upon taking office Yes. Information for the register shall be reported to the Storting’s administration no later than one month after the newly elected Storting has assembled. (Section 12 (a) Regulation on Register of Member’s Interests (2008, amended 2012))
Filing required upon leaving office No. Absent from legal framework.
Filing required annually No. Absent from legal framework.
Ad hoc filing required upon change in assets or conflicts of interest Yes. Changes or additions to previously registered information shall be reported no later than one month after the new information is available. The Member in question’s previously registered data shall be filed and the register updated with the new information no later than ten days after the Member has given notice of this. (Section 12 (b) Regulation on Register of Member’s Interests (2008, amended 2012))

Sanctions

Sanctions stipulated for late filing (fines, administrative, and/or criminal) Yes. A fine may be imposed on a minister if he or she fails to provide information on his or her position, office, or start up business that is such that a quarantine or a prohibition to work in a specific field would have been imposed. (Article 6 of the Guidelines on quarantine and prohibition to work with specific areas when transferring to a new position outside the central government (2005))
Sanctions stipulated for non-filing (fines, administrative, and/or criminal) Yes. A fine may be imposed on a minister if he or she fails to provide information on his or her position, office, or start up business that is such that a quarantine or a prohibition to work in a specific field would have been imposed. (Article 6 of the Guidelines on quarantine and prohibition to work with specific areas when transferring to a new position outside the central government (2005))
Sanctions stipulated for false disclosure (fines, administrative, and/or criminal) No. Absent from legal framework.

Monitoring and Oversight

Depository body explicitly identified Yes. Register of Member’s Appointments and Economic Interests (Section 1 Regulation on Register of Member’s Appointments and Economic Interests (2008, amended 2012))
Enforcement body explicitly identified No. Absent from legal framework.
Some agency assigned responsibility for verifying submission No. Absent from legal framework.
Some agency assigned responsibility for verifying accuracy No. Absent from legal framework.

Public access to declarations

Public availability Yes. Within 20 days after the registration deadline has expired after the elections, the registry shall be available to the public on the Parliamentary website. (Section 12 (a) Regulation on Register of Member’s Appointments and Economic Interests (2008, amended 2012))
Timing of information release specified Yes. Within 20 days after the registration deadline has expired after the elections, the registry shall be available to the public on the Parliamentary website. (Section 12 (a) Regulation on Register of Member’s Appointments and Economic Interests (2008, amended 2012))
Location(s) of access specified Yes. The registry shall be available to the public on the Parliamentary website. (Section 12 (a) Regulation on Register of Member’s Appointments and Economic Interests (2008, amended 2012))
Cost of access specified No. Absent from legal framework.

Members of Parliament

Disclosure items

Spouses and children included in disclosure No. Absent from legal framework.
Income and Assets
Real estate Yes. Real property that is of considerable value and that is used for business purposes. This also includes real property that belongs to a company that the Member him or herself owns or part-owns. The designation of the real property and the municipality it is situated in shall be stated. Property that is essentially residential or holiday accommodation shall not be registered in this provision. The same applies to farmhouses and work buildings on a farm. (Section 8 Regulation on Register of Member’s Interests (2008, amended 2012))
Movable assets No. Absent from legal framework.
Cash Yes. The name of companies, organizations, institutions or individuals that provide the Member in question with financial support, including material assets, secretarial assistance and the like, over and above the means made disposable by the Storting. (Section 7 Regulation on Register of Member’s Interests (2008, amended 2012))
Loans and Debts No. Absent from legal framework.
Income from outside employment/assets Yes. Paid employment or contract work that is undertaken in addition to the individual’s role as Member of the Storting. The position/contract and employer/contractor shall be stated. Distinct reference shall be made if individual jobs, or several jobs within the same calendar year for the same contactor, have provided remuneration of more than NOK 50 000. (Section 3 and 4 Regulation on Register of Member’s Interests (2008, amended 2012))
Incompatibilities
Gifts received as a public official Yes. Gifts or other financial benefits of a value of more than NOK 2 000, received from domestic or foreign donors, when the gift/benefit is in connection with the individual’s work as a Member. The name of the donor, the nature of the benefit and when the contribution was made shall be stated. (Section 11 Regulation on Register of Member’s Interests (2008, amended 2012))
Private firm ownership and/or stock holdings Yes. Business interests (shares, stakes, etc.) that exceed one percent of a company’s total capital or the National Insurance basic amount, and which the Member in question owns him or herself, either directly or indirectly through another company. The company’s name shall be stated. Dividends from the above shall not be stated. (Section 9 Regulation on Register of Member’s Interests (2008, amended 2012))
Ownership of state-owned enterprises (SOEs) No. Absent from legal framework.
Holding government contracts No. Absent from legal framework.
Board member, advisor, or company officer of private firm Yes. Independent income-producing business carried out in addition to parliamentary work, including work as a farmer, doctor, lawyer, journalist, commissioned consultancy work. The nature of the business shall be stated.All remunerated activities as stated in the first paragraph, and which the Member personally takes part in, shall be encompassed, including those where the business or job is formally organized through a company owned or part-owned by the Member him or herself. 
 (Section 3 Regulation on Register of Member’s Interests (2008, amended 2012))
Post-employment Yes. Public officials are required to disclose new positions or offices obtained outside central government or business within one year after leaving office as a politician. Employment, contract work or similar agreements with future employers or contractors, even if the employment, contract or job will not take effect until after the Member in question has stepped down from the Storting. (Article 4 of the Guidelines on quarantine and prohibition to work with specific areas when transferring to a new position outside the central government (2005) Section 6 Regulation on Register of Member’s Interests (2008, amended 2012))
Simultaneously holding policy-making position and policy-executing position No. Absent from legal framework.
Participating in official decision-making processes that affect private interests No. Absent from legal framework.
Concurrent employment of family members in public sector No. Absent from legal framework.

Filing frequency

Filing required upon taking office Yes. Information for the register shall be reported to the Storting’s administration no later than one month after the newly elected Storting has assembled. (Section 12 (a) Regulation on Register of Member’s Interests (2008, amended 2012))
Filing required upon leaving office No. Absent from legal framework.
Filing required annually No. Absent from legal framework.
Ad hoc filing required upon change in assets or conflicts of interest Yes. Changes or additions to previously registered information shall be reported no later than one month after the new information is available. The Member in question’s previously registered data shall be filed and the register updated with the new information no later than ten days after the Member has given notice of this. (Section 12 (b) Regulation on Register of Member’s Interests (2008, amended 2012))

Sanctions

Sanctions stipulated for late filing (fines, administrative, and/or criminal) No. Absent from legal framework.
Sanctions stipulated for non-filing (fines, administrative, and/or criminal) No. Absent from legal framework.
Sanctions stipulated for false disclosure (fines, administrative, and/or criminal) No. Absent from legal framework.

Monitoring and Oversight

Depository body explicitly identified Yes. Register of Member’s Appointments and Economic Interests (Section 1 Regulation on Register of Member’s Appointments and Economic Interests (2008, last amended 2012))
Enforcement body explicitly identified No. Absent from legal framework.
Some agency assigned responsibility for verifying submission No. Absent from legal framework.
Some agency assigned responsibility for verifying accuracy No. Absent from legal framework.

Public access to declarations

Public availability Yes. Within 20 days after the registration deadline has expired after the elections, the registry shall be available to the public on the Parliamentary website. (Section 12 (a)Regulation on Register of Member’s Appointments and Economic Interests (2008, amended 2012))
Timing of information release specified Yes. Within 20 days after the registration deadline has expired after the elections, the registry shall be available to the public on the Parliamentary website. (Section 12 (a)Regulation on Register of Member’s Appointments and Economic Interests (2008, amended 2012))
Location(s) of access specified Yes. The registry shall be available to the public on the Parliamentary website. (Section 12 (a)Regulation on Register of Member’s Appointments and Economic Interests (2008, amended 2012))
Cost of access specified No. Absent from legal framework.

Civil servants

Disclosure items

Spouses and children included in disclosure No. Absent from legal framework.
Income and Assets
Real estate No. Absent from legal framework.
Movable assets No. Absent from legal framework.
Cash No. Absent from legal framework.
Loans and Debts No. Absent from legal framework.
Income from outside employment/assets No. Absent from legal framework.
Incompatibilities
Gifts received as a public official No. Absent from legal framework.
Private firm ownership and/or stock holdings No. Absent from legal framework.
Ownership of state-owned enterprises (SOEs) No. Absent from legal framework.
Holding government contracts No. Absent from legal framework.
Board member, advisor, or company officer of private firm No. Absent from legal framework.
Post-employment Yes. Public officials are required to disclose new positions or offices obtained outside central government or business within one year after leaving office as a politician. (Article 4 of the Guidelines on quarantine and prohibition to work with specific areas when transferring to a new position outside the central government (2005))
Simultaneously holding policy-making position and policy-executing position No. Absent from legal framework.
Participating in official decision-making processes that affect private interests No. Absent from legal framework.
Concurrent employment of family members in public sector No. Absent from legal framework.

Filing frequency

Filing required upon taking office No. Absent from legal framework.
Filing required upon leaving office Yes. The employment contracts of civil servants must include an obligation for the civil servant to report to their employer when the civil servant is offered any new positions that the civil servant considers accepting. Similar notification shall apply to offers of tasks and plans to start businesses. (Article 2 of the Guidelines on quarantine and prohibition to work with specific areas when transferring to a new position outside central government (2005))
Filing required annually No. Absent from legal framework.
Ad hoc filing required upon change in assets or conflicts of interest Yes. According to Article 2 of the Guidelines on quarantine and prohibition to work with specific areas when transferring to a new position outside central government (2005) the employment contracts of civil servants must include an obligation for the civil servant to report to their employer when the civil servant is offered any new positions that the civil servant considers accepting. Similar notification shall apply to offers of tasks and plans to start businesses. According to Article 8 of the Public administration act (1967) a civil servant must decide whether a conflict of interest makes him or her disqualified to perform their duty in each instance and shall submit questions of conflict of interest to his or her immediate superior for a decision if a party so requests and this may be done without undue loss of time, or if the official himself otherwise finds reason to do so. (Article 2 of the Guidelines on quarantine and prohibition to work with specific areas when transferring to a new position outside central government (2005) Article 8 of the Public administration act (1967))

Sanctions

Sanctions stipulated for late filing (fines, administrative, and/or criminal) Yes. The employment contracts of civil servants must include a fine in case the civil servant is acting in violation of quarantine or legal prohibition, or in breach of the notification requirement. (Article 6 of the Guidelines on quarantine and prohibition to work with specific areas when transferring to a new position outside central government (2005))
Sanctions stipulated for non-filing (fines, administrative, and/or criminal) Yes. The employment contracts of civil servants must include a fine in case the civil servant is acting in violation of quarantine or legal prohibition, or in breach of the notification requirement. (Article 6 of the Guidelines on quarantine and prohibition to work with specific areas when transferring to a new position outside central government (2005))
Sanctions stipulated for false disclosure (fines, administrative, and/or criminal) No. Absent from legal framework.

Monitoring and Oversight

Depository body explicitly identified Yes. The Quarantine Committee shall be the depository body. (Article 6 of the Guidelines on quarantine and prohibition to work with specific areas when transferring to a new position outside the central government (2005))
Enforcement body explicitly identified No. Absent from legal framework.
Some agency assigned responsibility for verifying submission No. Absent from legal framework.
Some agency assigned responsibility for verifying accuracy No. Absent from legal framework.

Public access to declarations

Public availability No. Absent from legal framework.
Timing of information release specified No. Absent from legal framework.
Location(s) of access specified No. Absent from legal framework.
Cost of access specified No. Absent from legal framework.

Qualitative data for 2017


Legislation

Guidelines on quarantine and prohibition to work with specific areas when transferring to a new position outside the central government 2005 (Norwegian)pdf
Regulation on the Regulation on Register of Members of the Storting’s Appointments and Economic Interests, 2008, amended 2012 (English)pdf

Conflict of Interest

Norway’s Constitution (1814, last amended 2014) forbids the Head of State, who is a Monarch, to hold another public office. The Ethical Guidelines for the Public Service (2005, last amended 2006) make restrictions for Ministers and Civil Servants. These include accepting gifts, practicing second jobs that are incompatible with the interests of the state, and participating in decisions which affect private interests. It is up to future employers to include a clause on conflicts of interests in the employment contract of a retired public official. According to the Ethical Guidelines for Members of the Storting (2016) and the Guidelines on Gifts for Members of the Storting (2016), Members of Parliament are subject to some restrictions.

The Head of State, Ministers do not face any sanctions by law in case of violations. Administrative sanctions can however be stipulated for Civil Servants as to the Civil Service Act (1983, last amended 2015) and administrative and penal sanctions can be stipulated for MPs. Accordingly, an enforcement body to ensure these regulations in practice is only specified for Civil Servants, namely the Hiring respective authority. The Head of State and Ministers do not have an agency to turn to for guidance on conflicts of interests. Meanwhile, the Register of Members of the Storting’s Appointments and Economic Interests is responsible for providing guidance to MPs.


Quantitative Data

Primary Metric

2012201520162017Trend
Restrictions20424248
Sanctions25888
Monitoring and Oversight25252525

Alternative Metric

2012201520162017Trend
Head of State0333
Ministers38232323
Members of Parliament7202027
Civil servants49545454

Values lie in range between 0 and 100, higher values implying higher legislation comprehensiveness


Qualitative Data

We are frequently reviewing and refining our data, so in case you notice any mistake in our assessment, feel free to send us an email by clicking the button ()

Head of State

Restrictions

General restriction on conflict of interest No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Accepting gifts No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Private firm ownership and/or stock holdings No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Ownership of state-owned enterprises (SOEs) No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Holding government contracts No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Board member, advisor, or company officer of private firm No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Post-employment No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Simultaneously holding policy-making position and policy-executing position No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Participating in official decision-making processes that affect private interests No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Assisting family or friends in obtaining employment in public sector Yes. The Royal Princes and Princesses must not hold senior civil offices. (Article 21 The Constitution (1814, last amended 2014))

Sanctions

Fines are stipulated for violations of COI regulations restricting behavior No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Administrative sanctions are stipulated for violations of COI regulations restricting behavior No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Penal sanctions are stipulated for violations of COI regulations restricting behavior No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.

Monitoring and Oversight

Monitoring body specified (guidance, training, data tracking) No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.
Enforcement body specified (sanctions, hearings) No. Head of state is monarch. Legal provisions do not apply.

Ministers

Restrictions

General restriction on conflict of interest No. Absent from legal framework.
Accepting gifts Yes. Public officials shall not, on their own behalf or on behalf of others, accept or facilitate the acceptance of gifts, travel, hotel accommodations, hospitality, discounts, loans or other contributions or perquisites that are appropriate to, or intended by the donor, to influence their work. Public officials must not use their position to gain an undue advantage for themselves or anyone else. This also applies in cases where these advantages would not affect their service-capacity actions. (Article 4.5 Ethical Guidelines for the Public Service (2005, last amended 2006))
Private firm ownership and/or stock holdings Yes. A public official cannot have outside or second jobs, directorships or other paid assignments that are not compatible with the legitimate interests of the State as an employer, or that lend themselves to undermining trust in the public service. (Article 4.2 Ethical Guidelines for the Public Service (2005, last amended 2006))
Ownership of state-owned enterprises (SOEs) Yes. A public official cannot have outside or second jobs, directorships or other paid assignments that are not compatible with the legitimate interests of the State as an employer, or that lend themselves to undermining trust in the public service. (Article 4.2 Ethical Guidelines for the Public Service (2005, last amended 2006))
Holding government contracts Yes. A public official cannot have outside or second jobs, directorships or other paid assignments that are not compatible with the legitimate interests of the State as an employer, or that lend themselves to undermining trust in the public service. (Article 4.2 Ethical Guidelines for the Public Service (2005, last amended 2006))
Board member, advisor, or company officer of private firm Yes. A public official cannot have outside or second jobs, directorships or other paid assignments that are not compatible with the legitimate interests of the State as an employer, or that lend themselves to undermining trust in the public service. (Article 4.2 Ethical Guidelines for the Public Service (2005, last amended 2006))
Post-employment Yes. When a public official leaves the public service, it is important to ensure that the citizenry's trust in the public service is not impaired, or that the State's interests in a negotiation or other interaction are not affected. The employer must therefore consider whether certain positions should be subject to a quarantine clause in the employment contract. (Article 4.3 Ethical Guidelines for the Public Service (2005, last amended 2006))
Simultaneously holding policy-making position and policy-executing position No. Absent from legal framework.
Participating in official decision-making processes that affect private interests Yes. A public official shall be disqualified from preparing the basis for a decision or from making any decision in an administrative case if he is the head of, or holds a senior position in, or is a member of the executive board or the corporate assembly of a company which is a party to the case and which is not wholly owned by the State or a municipality, or an association, a savings bank or foundation that is a party to the case. (Article 6 (e) Public Administration Act (1967, last amended 2003))
Assisting family or friends in obtaining employment in public sector No. Absent from legal framework.

Sanctions

Fines are stipulated for violations of COI regulations restricting behavior No. Absent from legal framework.
Administrative sanctions are stipulated for violations of COI regulations restricting behavior No. Absent from legal framework.
Penal sanctions are stipulated for violations of COI regulations restricting behavior No. Absent from legal framework.

Monitoring and Oversight

Monitoring body specified (guidance, training, data tracking) No. Absent from legal framework.
Enforcement body specified (sanctions, hearings) No. Absent from legal framework.

Members of Parliament

Restrictions

General restriction on conflict of interest Yes. Members must be clearly aware that their conduct is particularly exposed to public scrutiny. If a Member is faced with potentially difficult conflicts of interest or other ethical dilemmas, openness concerning such questions may engender confidence and reduce the risk of misunderstanding and speculation. The Storting does not comprise part of the public administration, and it is not natural for the activities of the Storting to be subject to the same conflict of interest rules that apply there. Storting resolutions most commonly rest on political judgements and are of a different character to administrative decisions. They are made by the Storting in plenary, often after proposals from the Government, and they are more general than administrative decisions. It is also the responsibility of the individual Member to decide whether there is reason to inform the committee, his or her parliamentary party group and other Members about circumstances that might be perceived as a conflict of interest during the consideration of a particular matter, and which these people ought to be made aware of. Such information may contribute to preventing unnecessary speculation about concealed motives. Members who believe that they have an especially strong personal interest in a matter under consideration, and who deem this to be a conflict of interest, may raise the matter with the Presidium, which can make a recommendation on what method of approach to take. (Ethical Guidelines for Members of the Storting (2016))
Accepting gifts Yes. individual Members, and which the Member in question decides to keep shall be recorded in the Register of Members of the Storting’s Appointments and Economic Interests, provided that the gift or benefit has been given in connection with the individual’s work as a Member and has a value of more than NOK 2000. An exception is made for gifts of appreciation and anniversary gifts from the Member’s own party or parliamentary party group. (Guidelines on Gifts for Members of the Storting (2016))
Private firm ownership and/or stock holdings Partially. Circumstances subject to regulation are appointments in private or public bodies, but not unpaid appointments in political parties. Independent incomeproducing activities carried out by the Member himor herself or through a company, or paid employment or contract work that is undertaken in addition to the individual’s role as Member shall be declared. Agreements of a financial nature made with former or future employers or contractors shall be registered. The same applies to any financial support from individuals or bodies other than the Storting. Real property that is used for business purposes, with certain exceptions, must also be registered. The registration requirement also applies to company interests in business activities. (Ethical Guidelines for Members of the Storting (2016))
Ownership of state-owned enterprises (SOEs) Partially. Circumstances subject to regulation are appointments in private or public bodies, but not unpaid appointments in political parties. Independent incomeproducing activities carried out by the Member himor herself or through a company, or paid employment or contract work that is undertaken in addition to the individual’s role as Member shall be declared. Agreements of a financial nature made with former or future employers or contractors shall be registered. The same applies to any financial support from individuals or bodies other than the Storting. Real property that is used for business purposes, with certain exceptions, must also be registered. The registration requirement also applies to company interests in business activities. (Ethical Guidelines for Members of the Storting (2016))
Holding government contracts No. Absent from legal framework.
Board member, advisor, or company officer of private firm Partially. Circumstances subject to regulation are appointments in private or public bodies, but not unpaid appointments in political parties. Independent incomeproducing activities carried out by the Member himor herself or through a company, or paid employment or contract work that is undertaken in addition to the individual’s role as Member shall be declared. Agreements of a financial nature made with former or future employers or contractors shall be registered. The same applies to any financial support from individuals or bodies other than the Storting. Real property that is used for business purposes, with certain exceptions, must also be registered. The registration requirement also applies to company interests in business activities. (Ethical Guidelines for Members of the Storting (2016))
Post-employment No. Absent from legal framework.
Simultaneously holding policy-making position and policy-executing position No. Absent from legal framework.
Participating in official decision-making processes that affect private interests Yes. Members must be clearly aware that their conduct is particularly exposed to public scrutiny. If a Member is faced with potentially difficult conflicts of interest or other ethical dilemmas, openness concerning such questions may engender confidence and reduce the risk of misunderstanding and speculation. The Storting does not comprise part of the public administration, and it is not natural for the activities of the Storting to be subject to the same conflict of interest rules that apply there. Storting resolutions most commonly rest on political judgements and are of a different character to administrative decisions. They are made by the Storting in plenary, often after proposals from the Government, and they are more general than administrative decisions. It is also the responsibility of the individual Member to decide whether there is reason to inform the committee, his or her parliamentary party group and other Members about circumstances that might be perceived as a conflict of interest during the consideration of a particular matter, and which these people ought to be made aware of. Such information may contribute to preventing unnecessary speculation about concealed motives. Members who believe that they have an especially strong personal interest in a matter under consideration, and who deem this to be a conflict of interest, may raise the matter with the Presidium, which can make a recommendation on what method of approach to take. (Ethical Guidelines for Members of the Storting (2016))
Assisting family or friends in obtaining employment in public sector No. Absent from legal framework.

Sanctions

Fines are stipulated for violations of COI regulations restricting behavior No. The abovementioned provisions in the Penal Code regarding corruption assume intent. The prescribed penalty limits for corruption are fines or a maximum prison sentence of 10 years, depending on which provision in the Penal Code is applied. (Ethical Guidelines for Members of the Storting (2016))
Administrative sanctions are stipulated for violations of COI regulations restricting behavior No. Absent from legal framework.
Penal sanctions are stipulated for violations of COI regulations restricting behavior No. The abovementioned provisions in the Penal Code regarding corruption assume intent. The prescribed penalty limits for corruption are fines or a maximum prison sentence of 10 years, depending on which provision in the Penal Code is applied. (Ethical Guidelines for Members of the Storting (2016))

Monitoring and Oversight

Monitoring body specified (guidance, training, data tracking) Yes. Register of Members of the Storting’s Appointments and Economic Interests (Ethical Guidelines for Members of the Storting (2016))
Enforcement body specified (sanctions, hearings) No. Absent from legal framework.

Civil servants

Restrictions

General restriction on conflict of interest Yes. Civil servants should not allow private interests to influence the proceedings or work elsewhere, nor give priority to its own or business convenience or prestige affect their actions or decisions. (Article 4 Ethical Guidelines for the Public Service (2005, last amended 2012))
Accepting gifts Yes. Public officials shall not, on their own behalf or on behalf of others, accept or facilitate the acceptance of gifts, travel, hotel accommodations, hospitality, discounts, loans or other contributions or perquisites that are appropriate to, or intended by the donor, to influence their work. Public officials must not use their position to gain an undue advantage for themselves or anyone else. This also applies in cases where these advantages would not affect their service-capacity actions. (Article 4.5 Ethical Guidelines for the Public Service (2005, last amended 2012))
Private firm ownership and/or stock holdings Yes. A public official cannot have outside or second jobs, directorships or other paid assignments that are not compatible with the legitimate interests of the State as an employer, or that lend themselves to undermining trust in the public service. (Article 4.2 Ethical Guidelines for the Public Service (2005, last amended 2012))
Ownership of state-owned enterprises (SOEs) Yes. A public official cannot have outside or second jobs, directorships or other paid assignments that are not compatible with the legitimate interests of the State as an employer, or that lend themselves to undermining trust in the public service. (Article 4.2 Ethical Guidelines for the Public Service (2005, last amended 2012))
Holding government contracts Yes. A public official cannot have outside or second jobs, directorships or other paid assignments that are not compatible with the legitimate interests of the State as an employer, or that lend themselves to undermining trust in the public service. (Article 4.2 Ethical Guidelines for the Public Service (2005, last amended 2012))
Board member, advisor, or company officer of private firm Yes. A public official cannot have outside or second jobs, directorships or other paid assignments that are not compatible with the legitimate interests of the State as an employer, or that lend themselves to undermining trust in the public service. (Article 4.2 Ethical Guidelines for the Public Service (2005, last amended 2012))
Post-employment Yes. When a public official leaves the public service, it is important to ensure that the citizenry's trust in the public service is not impaired, or that the State's interests in a negotiation or other interaction are not affected. The employer must therefore consider whether certain positions should be subject to a quarantine clause in the employment contract. (Article 4.3 Ethical Guidelines for the Public Service (2005, last amended 2012))
Simultaneously holding policy-making position and policy-executing position No. Absent from legal framework.
Participating in official decision-making processes that affect private interests Yes. A public official shall be disqualified from preparing the basis for a decision or from making any decision in an administrative case if he is the head of, or holds a senior position in, or is a member of the executive board or the corporate assembly of a company which is a party to the case and which is not wholly owned by the State or a municipality, or an association, a savings bank or foundation that is a party to the case. (Article 6 (e) Public Administration Act (1967, last amended 2003))
Assisting family or friends in obtaining employment in public sector No. Absent from legal framework.

Sanctions

Fines are stipulated for violations of COI regulations restricting behavior No. Absent from legal framework.
Administrative sanctions are stipulated for violations of COI regulations restricting behavior Yes. A senior official or officer may be dismissed when they through improper conduct or outside the service proves unworthy of his position or breaks down the esteem or confidence required for the position. (Article 15 (A) Civil Service Act (no.3 of 1983 last amended 2015))
Penal sanctions are stipulated for violations of COI regulations restricting behavior No. Absent from legal framework.

Monitoring and Oversight

Monitoring body specified (guidance, training, data tracking) No. Absent from legal framework.
Enforcement body specified (sanctions, hearings) Yes. The Hiring respective authority (Article 17 Civil Service Act (no.3 of 1983 last amended 2015))

Qualitative data for 2017


Legislation

Civil Service Act no.3 of 1983, amended 2015 (Norwegian )pdf
Constitution 1814, amended 2014 (English)pdf
Ethical Guidelines for Members of the Storting 2013 (English)pdf
Ethical Guidelines for the Public Service 2005, amended 2006 (English )pdf
Public Administration Act, 1967, amended 2003 (English )pdf
Guidelines on Gifts for Members of the Storting, 2016 (English)pdf

Freedom of Information

Norway's Constitution (1814) provides the foundation for the country's freedom of information framework, while the Freedom of Information Act (2006, amended 2015) lays out the implementing measures. The FOI law applies to (a) the state, the county authorities and the municipal authorities, (b) any other legal person in cases where it makes individual decisions or issues regulations, and independent legal person in which the state, county authority or municipal authority has an equity share that gives it more than half of the voting rights or has the right to elect more than half of the voting members. However, the FOI law does not apply to the parliament or the judiciary.

Specific exemptions to disclosure are outlined in the aforementioned FOI law, Act No. 10 relating to Protective Security Services (the Security Act, 1998), Act No. 31 relating to the processing of personal data (Personal Data Act, 2000), and other laws. However, there is a public interest test whereby exemptions to disclosure may be overridden in cases where the public interest outweighs the prohibition on disclosure.

Appeals may be filed with public authorities. There is no appeals process through an independent non-judicial mechanism, such as an information commissioner. The FOI law does not include a judicial appeals mechanism, but administrative law provides that an action concerning the validity of an administrative decision can be brought against the body that made the decision in the final instance.

Following an appeal under the FOIA, a court may decide to levy compulsory fines on an agency for the failure to provide information. However, there are no enforcement or oversight bodies tasked with managing implementation. 


Quantitative Data

Primary Metric

2012201520162017Trend
Scope and Coverage93939393
Information access and release71717171
Exceptions and Overrides67838383
Sanctions for non-compliance33333333
Monitoring and Oversight0171717

Values lie in range between 0 and 100, higher values implying higher legislation comprehensiveness


Qualitative Data

We are frequently reviewing and refining our data, so in case you notice any mistake in our assessment, feel free to send us an email by clicking the button ()

Scope and Coverage

Scope of disclosure

Existence of legal right to access Yes. Everyone has a right of access to documents of the State and municipal administration and a right to follow the proceedings of the courts and democratically elected bodies. (Article 100, Constitution of Norway, 1814)
"Information" or "Documents" is defined Yes. ‘Document’ means any logically limited amount of information stored in a medium for subsequent reading, listening, presentation, or transfer or the like. The case documents of an administrative agency are documents which have been received by or submitted to an administrative agency, or which the administrative agency itself has drawn up, and which relate to that agency’s area of responsibility or activities. A document is considered to be drawn up when it has been dispatched by the agency. If this does not take place, the document shall be considered to have been drawn up when it has been finalised. (Section 4 Freedom of Information Act 2006, amended 2015)
Proactive disclosure is specified Yes. Bodies covered by the FOIA can make information available online as long as it does not fall into one of the exempt categories. (Section 7 Regulations to Freedom of Information Act (Government Regulations) No. 1119 2008)

Coverage of public and private sectors

Executive branch Yes. The FOI Act applies to (a) the state, the county authorities and the municipal authorities, (b) any other legal person in cases where it makes individual decisions or issues regulations,  (Section 2 Freedom of Information Act 2006, amended 2015)
Legislative branch Yes. The FOI Act does not apply to the Storting (Parliament), the Office of the Auditor General, the Storting's Ombudsman for Public Administration or other institutions of the Storting. A separate set of Rules cover the right of access to parliamentary documents. (Section 2 paragraph 4 Freedom of Information Act 2006, amended 2015 Section 1 Rules on the Right of Access to Parliamentary Documents 2009)
Judicial branch No. The FOI Act does not apply to the functions of courts of law pursuant to the statutes relating to the administration of justice nor to the functions of other public agencies pursuant to the statutes relating to the administration of justice in their capacity as justice administration agencies nor to functions exercised by the police or the prosecuting authority pursuant to the Criminal Procedure Act. (Section 2 paragraph 5 Freedom of Information Act 2006, amended 2015)
Other public bodies Yes. In general other public bodies are covered although there are a few exceptions such as the Office of the Auditor General, the Storting's (Parliament's) Ombudsman for Public Administration and the Norwegian postal service. (Section 2 Freedom of Information Act 2006, amended 2015 Section 1 Regulations to Freedom of Information Act (Government Regulations) No. 1119 2008)
Private sector Yes. The FOI applies to any independent legal person in which the state, county authority or municipal authority has an equity share that gives it more than half of the voting rights or has the right to elect more than half of the voting members. (Section 2 Freedom of Information Act 2006, amended 2015)

Access to specific documents (subject to reactive and/or proactive disclosure)

Draft legal instruments Yes. Draft legislation falls within the scope of information covered by the FOIA and as such can be obtained on request. Draft laws are not required to be published proactively. (Section 3 Freedom of Information Act 2006, amended 2015)
Enacted legal instruments Yes. New laws enter into force one month after publication in the Norwegian Law Gazette. Regulations also have to be published in the Norwegian Law Gazette. (Section 1 paragraph 3 Act 53 of 19 March 1969 on the Norwegian Law Gazette Section 38 and Section 39 Public Administration Act 1967, amended 2016)
Annual budgets Yes. The annual budget for municipalities shall be made available for public inspection at least fourteen days before it is considered by the municipal council or county council. . A copy of the approved budget must be sent to the Ministry for information and could also be obtained from the Ministry under the FOIA.Budgets fall within the scope of information covered by the FOIA and as such can be obtained on request. They are not required to be published proactively. However the law contains exemptions for documents drawn up by a ministry, and which relate to government budget matters and information about preliminary budget allocations. (Section 3 and Section 22 Freedom of Information Act 2006, amended 2015)
Annual chart of accounts (actual expenditures) Yes. Municipalities must produce annual accounts and reports which would fall under the FOIA and be available for inspection. Central government accounts must be sent to the Storting (parliament). Annual accounts fall within the scope of information covered by the FOIA and as such can be obtained on request. They are not required to be published proactively. (Section 3 Freedom of Information Act 2006, amended 2015 Section 13 Appropriation Regulations 2005)
Annual reports of public entities and programs Yes. Municipalities must produce annual accounts and reports which would fall under the FOIA and be available for inspection. Central government accounts must be sent to the Storting (parliament). Annual reports and programmes fall within the scope of information covered by the FOIA and as such can be obtained on request. They are not required to be published proactively. (Section 3 Freedom of Information Act 2006, amended 2015 Section 13 Appropriation Regulations 2005)

Information access and release

Procedural access

Universal access (agencies, citizens and non-citizens) Yes. Anyone can request information; there is no distinction between persons. Legal entities aren't mentioned. (Section 3 Freedom of Information Act 2006, amended 2015)
Type of request is specified (written, electronic, oral) Yes. Requests for access may be made orally or in writing. (Section 28 Freedom of Information Act 2006, amended 2015)
Assistance to requesters must be provided by law (includes barriers due to language differences, illiteracy, complexity of requests, etc.) No. Absent from legal framework.
Cost of access is specified (free, request fees, photocopying costs, other administrative costs) Yes. An administrative agency may only require payment for access insofar as it is authorised to do so by regulation. The regulation stipulates that the first 100 A4 pages are free and thereafter a public body can charge 1 NOK per page plus the costs of postage. (Section 8 Freedom of Information Act 2006, amended 2015 Section 4 Regulations to Freedom of Information Act (Government Regulations) No. 1119 2008)

Deadlines for release of information

20-day response deadline Yes. Agencies have to respond without "undue delay" which is normally interpreted as 1-3 days. However, if the request refers to comprehensive documents, a delay may not be regarded as “undue”. If a reply has not been received within 5 days of submitting the request, the requester is entitled to lodge an appeal. (Section 13(3), Section 29 and Section 32 Freedom of Information Act 2006, amended 2015)
Agency granted right to extend response time Yes.  If it is expected that it will take a disproportionately long time before an application can be answered, the administrative agency that received the application shall give a provisional reply as soon as possible. If third party consents are needed to release information subject to a duty of confidentialty a suitable period of time for such reply by the third party is allowed. (Section 11(a) Public Administration Act 1967, amended 2016)
Maximum total response time of no more than 40 days No. There is no time limit specified for dealing with an extension. (Section 29 Freedom of Information Act 2006, amended 2015 Section 11(a) Public Administration Act 1967, amended 2016)

Exceptions and Overrides

Exemptions to disclosure

Existence of secrecy/states secrets law Yes. The Security Act includes provisions setting out the definitions of classified information as well as the limits of access to that information. (Act of 20 March 1998 No. 10 relating to Protective Security Services (the Security Act))
Existence of personal privacy/data law Yes. The data protection act sets out the rules on processing and disclosure of personal data. The Constitution sets out the right to the respect of privacy and family life. (Act of 14 April 2000 No. 31 relating to the processing of personal data (Personal Data Act) Article 102 Constitution)
Specific exemptions to disclosure Yes. Exemptions from access cover information that is subject to a duty of confidentiality, personal data, internal documents, documents obtained externally for internal preparation of a case, certain documents relating to the Royal Court, other court documents, documents that are exchanged during consultations with the Sami Parliament, documents related to Norway’s foreign policy interests, information on national defence and security, certain budget matters, governmental negotiations, regulatory or control measures, documents relating to offences and information liable to facilitate the commission of an offence, certain information concerning the royal family, budgetary matters, civil appointments. A wide range of parliamentary information is exempt and parliamentarians are not covered by the law. Archival records that are in poor condition are also exempt. (Sections 13-26 Freedom of Information Act 2006, amended 2015 Section 9 Regulations to Freedom of Information Act (Government Regulations) No. 1119 2008 Sections 2 - 5 Rules on the Right of Access to Parliamentary Documents 2009 Section 11 Security Act 1998 Section 13 Public Administration Act 1967, amended 2016 Sections 8 and 9 Personal Data Act 2000)
Public Interest test: Specified exemptions to disclosure may be overridden in cases where disclosure of information benefits the public interest.

Appeals

Appeals allowed within public entities Yes. Decisions made under the FOIA may be appealed to the administrative agency that is immediately superior to the administrative agency that has made the decision. This needs to be done within three weeks of receiving the refusal or three weeks of the date when the refusal should have been received, in cases of administrative silence. (Section 32 Freedom of Information Act 2006, amended 2015 Section 11 Regulations to Freedom of Information Act (Government Regulations) No. 1119 2008 Section 29 Public Administration Act 1967, amended 2016)
Independent, non-judicial appeals mechanism, e.g., information commissioner. Does not include Ombudsman unless appeals decisions are binding. No. Absent from legal framework.
Judicial appeals mechanism Yes. The FOIA does not include a judicial appeals mechanism. However administrative law provides that an action concerning the validity of an administrative decision can be brought against the body that made the decision in the final instance. (Section 1-5 Dispute Act 2005, amended 2016)

Sanctions for non-compliance

Administrative sanctions are specified for violations of disclosure requirements No. Absent from legal framework.
Fines are specified for violations of disclosure requirements Yes. Following an appeal under the FOIA, a court may decide to levy compulsory fines on an agency for the failure to provide information, until the information is provided. The size of the fine is determined by the Courts. (Section 32 Freedom of Information Act 2006, amended 2015 Chapter 13 Enforcement Act 1992, amended 2016)
Criminal sanctions are specified for violations of disclosure requirements No. Absent from legal framework.

Monitoring and Oversight

Information officers must be appointed in public agencies No. Absent from legal framework.
Public body that is responsible for applying sanctions Yes. Following an appeal under the FOIA, a court may decide to levy compulsory fines on an agency for the failure to provide information, until the information is provided. The size of the fine is determined by the Courts. (Section 32 Freedom of Information Act 2006, amended 2015 Chapter 13 Enforcement Act 1992, amended 2016)
Public body that is responsible for public outreach (raising public awareness) No. Absent from legal framework.
Nodal agency for RTI (implementation support/compliance within public sector). Does not include Ombudsman. No. Absent from legal framework.
Ombudsman involvement in implementation is specified by law No. Absent from legal framework.
Reporting of data and/or implementation is required No. Absent from legal framework.

Qualitative data for 2017


Legislation

Constitution of Norway, 1814 (English)pdf
Freedom of Information Act 2006, amended 2015 (Norwegian)pdf
Regulations to Freedom of Information Act (Government Regulations) No. 1119 2008, amended 2013 (Norwegian)pdf
Rules on the Right of Access to Parliamentary Documents 2009 (Norwegian)pdf
Act 53 of 19 March 1969 on the Norwegian Law Gazette (Norwegian)pdf
Public Administration Act, 1967, amended 2016 (Norwegian)pdf
Appropriation Regulations, 2005, amended 2015 (Norwegian)pdf
Act of 20 March 1998 No. 10 relating to Protective Security Services (the Security Act), amended 2016 (Norwegian)pdf
Act of 14 April 2000 No. 31 relating to the processing of personal data (Personal Data Act), amended 2015 (Norwegian)pdf
Dispute Act, 2005, amended 2016 (Norwegian)pdf
Enforcement Act 1992, amended 2016 (Norwegian)pdf

Public Procurement

The Norwegian public procurement system is regulated by the Procurement Act (1999) and further regulations are laid down in the Public Procurement Regulation (2006) and Utilities Regulation (2006), Defence and Security Regulation (2013) and the Public Procurement Act of 2016. There is no independent public procurement body in Norway.

The lowest minimum thresholds for conducting a public procurement tender are:

▪         NOK  1,100,000 (ca. EUR 115,000) for goods

▪         NOK  1,100,000 (ca. EUR 115,000) for works

▪         NOK  1,100,000 (ca. EUR 115,000) for services

The minimum number of bidders is 3 for restricted procedures (5 if above the EEA threshold) and 3 for negotiated procedures and competitive dialogue. The minimum submission period is 35 days for open procedures, 30 days for restricted procedures and 30 for negotiated procedures from dispatch date.

There is some preferential treatment for SMEs as there are limits on minimum yearly turnover set in contracts above the EEA threshold and some sustainability criteria (e.g. EMAS) can be considered during the tendering process. There are several options for bid exclusion: not meeting tender requirements, outstanding tax or social security liabilities, no submission of request to participate, conviction for certain crimes (participating in criminal organisation, money laundering, criminal offenses of professional conduct), and bankruptcy. Bids can be also excluded because of abnormally low bid prices.

In the bid evaluation phase, there are conflict of interest restrictions on the composition of the evaluation committee. However, no form of independence of  the contracting authority is mandated for the evaluation committee.

It is not specified whether there is a payable fee in case of an arbitration procedure, and whether court decisions are published.


Quantitative Data

Primary Metric

2012201520162017Trend
Scope888794
Information availability252562
Evaluation818169
Open competition757569
Institutional arrangements212121

Values lie in range between 0 and 100, higher values implying higher legislation comprehensiveness


Qualitative Data

We are frequently reviewing and refining our data, so in case you notice any mistake in our assessment, feel free to send us an email by clicking the button ()

Scope

Threshold - lowest PP

What is the minimum contract value above which the public procurement law is applied? (Product type GOODS) NOK 100000. The Public Procurement Act and Public Procurement Regulation part I applies for tenders exceeding NOK 100000 (the fundamental principles of competition, equal treatment, predictability, transparancy and proportionality apply, but no obligation of a prior publication of contract notices, and no detailed procedural rules). (The Public Procurement Act of 2016 § 2 (1))
What is the minimum contract value above which the public procurement law is applied? (Product type WORKS) NOK 100000. The Public Procurement Act and Public Procurement Regulation part I applies for tenders exceeding NOK 100000 (the fundamental principles of competition, equal treatment, predictability, transparancy and proportionality apply, but no obligation of a prior publication of contract notices, and no detailed procedural rules). (The Public Procurement Act of 2016 § 2 (1))
What is the minimum contract value above which the public procurement law is applied? (Product type SERVICES) NOK 100000. The Public Procurement Act and Public Procurement Regulation part I applies for tenders exceeding NOK 100000 (the fundamental principles of competition, equal treatment, predictability, transparancy and proportionality apply, but no obligation of a prior publication of contract notices, and no detailed procedural rules). (The Public Procurement Act of 2016 § 2 (1))

Threshold - by PP type

What are the minimum application thresholds for the procurement type? (Entity: PUBLIC SECTOR) NOK 1100000. The Public Procurement Regulation part II applies from NOK 1 100 000 (obligation of a prior publication of contract notices at national level, national procedural rules). For health and social services the threshold value is NOK 6 300 000 (obligation of a prior publication of contract notices at EEA level). Procurements between NOK 100 000 and these thresholds are subject the fundamental principles of competition, equal treatment, predictability, transparancy and proportionality. (The Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 §§ 5-1 and 5-2)
What are the minimum application thresholds for the procurement type? (Entity: UTILITIES) NOK 3500000. The Utilities Procurement Regulation part II (obligation of a prior publication of contract notices at EEA level) applies from NOK 3 500 000 for public supply and service contracts awarded by central government authorities and design contests organised by such authorities, and above NOK 44 000 000 for public works contracts. For health and social services and other specific services the threshold value is NOK 8 400 000. Procurements between NOK 100 000 and these thresholds are subject the fundamental principles of competition, equal treatment, predictability, transparancy and proportionality. (The Utilities Procurement Regulation of 2016 §§ 5-1 and 5-2.)
What are the minimum application thresholds for the procurement type? (Entity: DEFENCE) NOK 3500000. The Regulation for Public Defense and Security Procurement of 2013 part II (obligation of a prior publication of contract notices at EEA level) applies from NOK 3 500 000 for public supply and service contracts awarded by central government authorities and design contests organised by such authorities and above NOK 44 000 000 for public works contracts. Procurements between NOK 100 000 and these thresholds are subject the fundamental principles of competition, equal treatment, predictability, transparancy and proportionality. (The Regulation for Public Defense and Security Procurement of 2013 §§ 2-1 (2) and 2-2 (1))

Threshold - by product type

What are the minimum application thresholds for the procurement type? (Product type GOODS) NOK 1100000. The Public Procurement Regulation part II applies from NOK 1 100 000 (obligation of a prior publication of contract notices at national level, national procedural rules). (The Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 § 5-1 and 5-3)
What are the minimum application thresholds for the procurement type? (Product type WORKS) NOK 1100000. The Public Procurement Regulation part II applies from NOK 1 100 000 (obligation of a prior publication of contract notices at national level, national procedural rules). (The Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 § 5-1 and 5-3)
What are the minimum application thresholds for the procurement type? (Product type SERVICES) NOK 1100000. The Public Procurement Regulation part II applies from NOK 1 100 000 (obligation of a prior publication of contract notices at national level, national procedural rules). For health and social services the threshold value is NOK 6 300 000 (obligation of a prior publication of contract notices at EEA level). (The Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 § 5-1 and 5-3)

Information availability

Publishing and record keeping

Is there a requirement that tender documents must published in full? Yes. The Public Procurement Regulation requires free, direct and unlimited access to the tender documents for tenders exceeding the EEA thresholds. Excemptions apply when called for by technical reasons or in order to protect business secrets. (The Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 §§ 14-3, 22-4 and 7-4)
Are any of these documents published online at a central place? No. The law does not require a certain place that the documents may be accessed from. The notice shall, however, include a link to where the documents can be found. (The Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 § 14-3(1))
Is it mandatory to keep all of these records? -Public notices of bidding opportunities, -Bidding documents and addenda, -Bid opening records, -Bid evaluation reports, -Formal appeals by bidders and outcomes, -Final signed contract documents and addenda and amendments, -Claims and dispute resolutions, -Final payments, -Disbursement data (as required by the country’s financial management system) No. Not pursuant to the Public Procurement Act or the Public Procurement Regulation. The Public Procurement Regulation requires a protocol to be kept which includes all important decisions. The contracting authority must also keep documentation relating to all important decisions. Further, the contract must be kept throughout the contract period. Please note that the Archive Act also is of relevance. (The Public Procurement Regulation §§ 7-1, 10-5, 25-5)
Are contracts awarded within a framework agreement published (ie mini contracts)? No.

Sub-contracting

Is it mandatory to publish information on subcontractors (ie names) in some cases? Yes. Where relevant, the protocol shall contain information on what parts of the contract will be performed by subcontractors, including the subcontractor's name where this is known. The public may request access to the protocol, and the information contained therein may not be withheld unless there are specific reasons (such as protection of business secrets). (The Public Procurement Regulation §§ 10-5 (2) l, 25-5 (2) n and 7-3)
If yes, what is the threshold for publication (i.e. the % of total contract value subcontracted)? For example, if the threshold is 75%, and you have subcontracted out only 40% of your contract, no disclosure is required. Consultant will insert 75% in the short answer column.

Evaluation

Preferential treatment

Is there a ban on mentioning specific companies or brands in tender specification/call for tender? Yes. Unless justified by the subject-matter of the contract, technical specifications shall not refer to a specific make or source, or a particular process, or to trade marks, patents, types or a specific origin or production with the effect of favouring or eliminating certain undertakings or certain products. Such reference shall be permitted on an exceptional basis, where a sufficiently precise and intelligible description of the subject-matter of the contract is not possible. Such reference shall be accompanied by the words ‘or equivalent’. (The Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 §§ 8-5(3) and 15-1(4))
Is there a preferential treatment for small-to-medium enterprises (SMEs)? Yes. For procurements exceeding the EEA thresholds, the authority may not require a minimum yearly turnover exceeding two times the estimated contract value, except in duly justified cases such as relating to the special risks attaced to the nature of the works, services or supplies. (The Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 § 16-3 (1) a)
Is there a preferential treatment for local/national companies? (companies from other EU MS are considered foreign companies) No.
Is there a specific set of rules for green/sustainable procurement? Yes. Contracting authorities shall organize their procurement activity in such a way that it contributes to the reduction of harmful environmental effects. It shall promote solutions that are environmentally friendly, inter alia by taking life cycle costs into consideration. (The Public Procurement Act of 2016 § 5)

Bid evaluation

Are there restrictions on allowable grounds for tenderer exclusion? Yes. Mandatory and discretionary exclusion grounds are set out in the Regulation. The exclusion grounds are elaborated for tenders exceeding the EEA thresholds. (The Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 §§ 9-5 and 24-2)
Are some bids automatically excluded? e.g., lowest/highest price; unusually low price, etc. Yes. Bids not submitted by the submission deadline, not fulfilling requirements of communication form, bids containing material deviations from the tender documents. In tenders exceeding the EEA thresholds, contracting authorities shall exclude abnormally low tenders, if that is due to not fulfilling obligations relating to environment, social or labour law. The authority shall however first ask the supplier to explain the bid, before rejecting it as abnormally low. (The Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 §§ 9-4, 9-6, 24-1, 24-8 and 24-9.)
Is scoring criteria published? Yes. The award criteria shall be stated in the tender documents. Further rules relating to the publishing of the method of evaluation are not set out in the Regulation, and this must be based on an interpretation of case law of relevance. (The Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 §§ 8-11 (1) and 14-1 (3) (d) (4))
Are decisions always made by a committee? No.
Are there regulations on evaluation committee composition to prevent conflict of interest? Yes. The Public Administration Act: general rules on conflicts of interest applies. The Public Procurement Regulation: Only for design contests: The jury shall be composed exclusively of natural persons who are independent of participants in the contest. Where a particular professional qualification is required from participants in a contest, at least a third of the members of the jury shall have that qualification or an equivalent qualification (Public Administration Act of 1967 §§ 6 ff, the Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 § 31-4)
Is some part of evaluation committee mandatorily independent of contracting authority? No.
Are scoring results publicly available? Yes. The scoring results are publicly available to the extent that they do not reveal classified information, such as business secrets. (The Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 § 7-3, cf. § 7-4.)
Does the law specify under which conditions the tender can be cancelled? Yes. The tender can be cancelled if the contracting authority has justifiable reason for doing so. (The Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 §§ 10-4 and 25-4)

Open competition

CFT publication

Does the law specify the location for publicizing open calls for tenders? Yes. The law requires the tender notice to be published at the official website www.doffin.no. Tenders exceeding the EEA thresholds are forwarded to TED (the Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 §§ 8-17 and 21-1)
Does the law specify the location for publicizing restricted calls for tenders? Yes. The law requires the law requires the tender notice to be published at the official website www.doffin.no. Tenders exceeding the EEA thresholds are forwarded to TED (the Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 §§ 8-17 and 21-1)
Does the law specify the location for publicizing negotiated calls for tenders? Yes. The law requires the law requires the tender notice to be published at the official website www.doffin.no. Tenders exceeding the EEA thresholds are forwarded to TED (the Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 §§ 8-17 and 21-1)

Minimum # of bidders

What is the minimum number of bidders for restricted procedures? 3. Tenders below the EEA thresholds require a minimum of 3 tenderers. Tenders exceeding the EEA thresholds reuiqre a minimum of 5 tenderers. (The Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 §§ 8-9 (3) and 16-12 (3))
What is the minimum number of bidders for negotiated procedures? 3. (The Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 §16-12 (3))
What is the minimum number of bidders for competitive dialogue procedures? 3. (The Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 §16-12 (3))

Bidding period length

What are the minimum number of days for open procedures? 35. The time limit for the receipt of tenders shall be sufficient for participants to gather necessary information and to make necessary calculations. For tenders exceeding the EEA threshold, the length of the bidding period is minimum 30 days, provided that the authority requires electronic submission. If not, the miminum period is 35 days. The time limit may be shortened to 15 days if the authority has published a prior information notice. (The Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 §§ 8-14 and 20-2 (1) and (2))
What are the minimum number of days for restricted procedures? 30. The time limit for the receipt of tenders shall be sufficient for participants to gather necessary information and to make necessary calculations. For tenders exceeding the EEA threshold, the length of the bidding period is minimum 25 days, provided that the authority requires electronic submission. If not, the minimum period is 30 days. The time limit may be shortened to 10 days if the authority has published a prior information notice. Note that there is also a minimimum time limit for the receipt of requests to participate, which is 30 days. (The Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 §§ 8-14 and 20-3 (2) and (4))
What are the minimum number of days  for competitive negotiated procedures? 30. The time limit for the receipt of tenders shall be sufficient for participants to gather necessary information and to make necessary calculations. For tenders exceeding the EEA threshold, the length of the bidding period is minimum 25 days, provided that the authority requires electronic submission. If not, the minimum period is 30 days. The time limit may be shortened to 10 days if the authority has published a prior information notice. Note that there is also a minimimum time limit for the receipt of requests to participate, which is 30 days. (The Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 §§ 8-14 and 20-4 (2) and (3))

Institutional arrangements

Institutions and regulations

Does the law specify the main EXCEPTIONS preventing the application of the public procurement law for tenders/organisations? Yes. The Procurement Act does not apply to procurements which may be exempted under the EEA Agreement Article 123 or other procurements involving essential security interests. Further exemptions from the Public Procurement Act are: service contracts awarded on the basis of an exclusive right; specific service contracts listed in Directive 2014/24 Art. 10; R&D services, except those listed in the Directive Art. 14; contracts for the principal purpose of permitting the contracting authorities to provide or exploit public communicatinos networks or to provide to the public one or more electronic communications services; certain contracts entered into by contracting authorities operating within the field of postal service sectors; contracts between entities within the public sector. (The Public Procurement Act of 2016 § 2 (3) and the Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 §§ 2-2 ff.)
Does the law specify the main types of institutions that must apply the public procurement law? Yes. State, regional and local authorities, bodies governed by public law, associations formed by one or several of such authorities or one or several of such bodies governed by public law (Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 § 1-2)
Does the law specify the main procedure types or procurement methods permitted? Yes. Open procedure, restricted procedure, negotiated procedure, competitive dialogue and innovation partnership. (The Public Procurement Regulation of 2016 §§ 8-3 and 13-1)
Is there a procurement arbitration court dedicated to public procurement cases? No. Normal judiciary system. The Complaints Board for Public Procurement (KOFA) is an independent body assigned to review complaints regarding infringements of the law on public procurement and associated regulations. KOFA gives advisory opinions, i.e. decisions not enforceable by law, except for decisions imposing fines for violations concerning illegal direct awards. (The Public Procurement Act of 2016 §§ 8, 9, 11 and 12 )
Is there a procurement regulatory body dedicated to public procurement? No.
Does the law specify procurement advisors' profession (i.e. degree to be obtained, official list of members of the professional association) and its role in the tendering process (e.g. right to draft tender documentations, conduct market research identifying bidders)? No.
Is disclosure of final, beneficial owners required for placing a bid? No.

Complaints

Is there a fee for arbitration procedure? Yes. For KOFA complaints there is a filing fee of NOK 8000. Complaints concerning illegal direct awards has a filing fee of NOK 1000. KOFA filing fees are refunded if complaint succeeds. The fee for the proceedings by the district court is at least NOK 5 245, and the fee for interlocutory injunctions is NOK 2 022. (The KOFA Regulation § 13, and the Court Fees Act §§ 8 and 14)
Is there a ban on contract signature until arbitration court decision (first instance court)? Yes. For tenders exceeding the EEA thresholds, the contracting authority is banned from signing the contract if a petition for interlocutory injunction is filed. The ban lasts until a decision is imposed by the court. (The Public Procurement Regulation § 25-3)
What is the maximum number of days until arbitration court decision from filing a complaint in the case of awarded contracts?
Is there a requirement to publicly release arbitration court decisions ? No. Anyone may claim access to court documents, including the decision of the court but there is no obligation to publish court decisions. In practice there are usually published on the website of www.lovdata.no (The Disputes Act § 14-2)

Qualitative data for 2017


Legislation

Regulations on defence and security procurement 1999 as 31Dec2014 (Norwegian)pdf
Regulation on the Appeals Committee for Public Procurement 2002 as 31Dec2014 (Norwegian)pdf
Public Procurement Regulations 403_2006 as 31Dec2014 (Norwegian)pdf
Public Procurement Regulations 402_2006 as 31Dec2014 (Norwegian)pdf
Public Procurement Law_1999 amended 2013 (English)pdf
Court Fees Act 1982 amended 2014 (Norwegian)pdf
Public Procurement Act 2016 (Norwegian)PDF
Public Procurement Regulation 2016 (Norwegian)PDF
Regulation on Defence and Security Procurements 2016 (Norwegian)PDF
Utilities Procurement Regulation 2016 (Norwegian)PDF
Public Administration Act 1967 amended 2016 (Norwegian)PDF
Regulation on Appeals Committee for Public Procurement 2002 amended 2016 (Norwegian)PDF
Court Fees Act 1982 amended 2016 (Norwegian)PDF
Dispute Act 2005 amended 2016 (Norwegian)PDF