For foreign corporations operating in Norway, the joint stock corporation and the branch are the most popular business forms. Other common business forms are partnerships, single proprietorships, co-operative societies and limited joint-stock partnerships. Franchising is growing rapidly and licensing is also common.
Import restrictions: With the exception of its telecommunications, shipping and agricultural sectors, Norway maintains few restrictions on imports.
Import duties: Norway is a member of the European Free Trade Area (EFTA) and the European Economic Area, and maintains a single-column tariff list that employs the Harmonised System (HS) classification.
Import documentation: The commercial invoice plus a bill of lading or an airway bill. A certificate of origin is not required unless specified. The importation of live animals, animal products and plants requires a sanitary or health certificate.
Norway is generally supportive of foreign private investment, particularly in three major areas: the petroleum industry, high technology projects, and projects in remotely populated regions. Concessions related to industrial activity are granted by the Ministry of Trade and Industry, and by the Ministry of Agriculture for agricultural projects. Norway permits 100 percent foreign ownership of investments and no registration is required for license, royalty, and technology agreements.
Dividends and profits from business activities in Norway, interest and contractual amortisation on loans, as well as repatriation of invested capital are freely and fully remitable. Ordinary payments from within Norway to foreign entities are not subject to significant restrictions, provided they are made through a Norwegian commercial bank. In contrast some transfers of capital into Norway require foreign exchange licenses.
Foreign investment is restricted under the following circumstances: