Establishing a company in Norway

Norway is situated in Northern Europe, on the western portion of the Scandinavian Peninsula. Geographically, it is a long and narrow country bordering on its west with the Norwegian Sea and Atlantic Ocean, to its east with Sweden, and to its north it shares borders with Finland and Russia. It has a population of 5.15 million, and its capital is Oslo, located in the country’s more southern area. Norway is a Nordic-Scandinavian country, extremely developed and successful, a leader in international economic and social ranking indices. Its citizens elected to not become a member of the EU, its economic strength contributing greatly to this decision. However, Norway is a member of the EFTA (European Free Trade Association), a fact that proves advantageous for entrepreneurs who maintain business contacts with various European countries and wish to establish a company in Norway.

Norway has two official languages: Bokmål, which serves as a means of communication, and the Norse dialect of Nynorsk. Like other Scandinavian countries, Norway citizens also speak fluent English and it serves as an accepted third language. However commonly spoken, English is not accepted for company incorporation, and all relevant documents must be submitted in the Norwegian language. Norway is considered a global leader in the institution of democracy, the quality of life for its citizens, per capita income, and welfare conditions – primarily thanks to the huge economic growth made possible by discovering large natural gas and oil deposits in its national territories.

  • Apart from its booming economy and impressive welfare policy, Norway is also one of the world’s most beautiful tourist destinations. This northern country enjoys 24-hour sunlit days in the summer months, whale observatory posts, a rich cultural heritage in the capital, and of course spectacular cruises along the fjords crossing the length of its coastline.
  • Prior to the discovery of oil and gas deposits in the 1960s, Norway was not particularly modern or developed. These extensive natural resources allowed it to grow its economy significantly. An interesting example of the Norwegian mindset is evident in how the government decided to use a major percentage of its energy sector profits. Since 1995 Norway has been managing a sovereign wealth pension fund with assets estimated at over USD 870 billion, funding for which is generated primarily from the gas and oil industry. This fund invests globally, and designated for securing the pensions of Norwegian citizens, protecting the state from oil and gas reserve depletion, and providing better control of local economy with a huge in-flow of money.
  • Although Norway is one of the world’s biggest oil exporters, it is also known for renewable resource ingenuity, and a large part of the country relies on renewable energy. It also maintains a high taxation rate for fuel, despite being a fuel producer.

Similar to other Scandinavian countries, Norway balances a free market economy with an excellent welfare policy. Being the richest of the Scandinavian countries, it can provide its citizens an extremely high standard of living and many government-funded services. Per income capita is ranked second in Europe and fourth in the world. The country is also ranked seventh in global oil exporters, and third among gas exporters, with many more natural reserves, and potential deposit sites close to the North Pole. Apart from oil and gas, constituting a quarter of GNP, Norway also has additional natural resources that contribute greatly to the economy, including minerals, a forestry industry, fishing, and hydroelectric power generation.

Norway has a large and powerful public sector, with large corporations in energy, banking, and communications still controlled by the government. However, local economy is very competitive and encourages entrepreneurialship, providing convenient and efficient terms for international companies and businesspeople who wish to establish a company in Norway.

Mellius offers its clients a range of business contacts in Norway, providing the best solutions that are tailor-made to client needs and type of activity.

General Information


Type of company

Private Limited Liability Company (A.S.)

Relevant Companies Law

Private Limited Liability Companies Act of 1997

Offices

Law requires companies to provide a local office address

Language of original incorporation documents

Norwegian

Finance and Taxation


Currency

NOK

Corporate tax rate

22%

Standard share capital

30,000 NOK

Office Holders


Company Secretary (Secretary)

 
Obligation to appoint company secretary

Not required

Obligation to appoint local secretary

Not required

Type of entity that may function as company secretary

Irrelevant

Director

 
Obligation to appoint company director

Not required

Obligation to appoint local company director

At least half of directors and deputies must be EEA residents

Minimum number of directors

2 (a deputy must be appointed)

Type of entity that may serve as company director

Individual and/or company

Shareholders

 
Obligation to register shareholders

Required

Obligation to register local shareholders

Not required

Minimum number of shareholders

1

Type of entity that may register as shareholder

Individual and/or company

Type of shares

Registered shares

Accessibility of Information


Company registrar

Information regarding office holders is accessible to the public

Annual Assembly and Reporting


Obligation to hold annual assembly

Required

Obligation to prepare financial reports

Required

Obligation to submit financial reports

Required

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