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Norway

Branches

Updated 06/2012

Legal requirements

Different types of branch

Norwegian branch of a foreign company (NUF)

When a branch is opened in Norway, the foreign enterprise is responsible for the business of the Norwegian branch. If the branch has no permanent place of business, the operation may be registered via a VAT representative. A 'place of business' is where the foreign enterprise with operations in Norway has its office, sales outlet, production facility, etc.

There is no capital requirement for the establishment of a Norwegian branch.

Subsidiary

The foreign enterprise can start up a subsidiary. The guidelines relating to the legal structure of the organisation that is established will then apply.

Many of the requirements and procedures for opening a secondary establishment are the same as for starting up a business.

Administrative procedures

Preparatory steps

Be aware that there are different rules for obtaining residence permits in Norway, depending in where the applicant comes from. Where people from outside Norway are to be employed, they will generally have to apply for residence permits as employees. EEA nationals do not however need residence or employment permits. If they are staying for more than three months, they have to register with the police, who will issue a registration certificate.

Separate transitional rules apply to nationals of Bulgaria and Romania.

Foreigners without a Norwegian social security number who are to be employed in or responsible for the Norwegian branch must apply for a D-number.

Registration

When a foreign company operates in Norway, it is obliged to register in the Register of Business Enterprises.

Registering a branch of a foreign company

To register the business in the Register of Business Enterprises, you use the coordinated registration.

Essential documentation to be attached:

  • Incorporation documents and statutes, with details of the company name, legal structure and business address of the foreign parent. The company name must include the designation according to the law of its home country, e.g. AB, Ltd, Inc, etc.
  • Proof of registration and registration number from a foreign register of companies.
  • Record from the competent body within the company to show the decision to set up operations in Norway.
  • Norwegian representative: Declaration that the person concerned has assumed the responsibility together with the entity for ensuring that VAT is charged and paid.

The statutes should normally be written in Norwegian. The branch must generally comply with the same rules as any Norwegian business enterprise.

  • Coordinated registration

Normal obligations

Foreign enterprises that run or participate in operations in Norway or on the Norwegian continental shelf, and which are liable for tax in Norway, must submit both their branch accounts and the accounts of the foreign entity to the Register of Company Accounts.

The branch will normally be liable for taxes and duties in Norway and must also comply with the reporting rules that apply in Norway.

Resources

You can find further information on the following web sites:

Help & advice

Help & advice

Altinn/Start and run a business, tel. +47 800 33 840, is a toll-free national information service for people establishing and running companies. The aim is to make it easier to launch and run businesses in Norway.

SOLVIT helps businesses deal with problems that arise when national authorities wrongly apply EU market rules.

If you wish to establish a business or perform temporary cross-border services in the EU/EEA area (the 27 EU member states, plus Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway), turn to the ‘Points of Single Contact (PSC)’ - Members of the EUGO network - that will help you to complete all necessary administrative procedures on-line! Get the information you need and submit your applications to the responsible authorities online. You no longer have to worry about contacting several different authorities one by one - the PSC will do it for you!

E-mail a business organisation near you

The EU runs a network (Enterprise Europe Network) of local business organisations in most European countries that may be able to help you.

Choose your country and town and enter your enquiry below.

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