Legal framework and regulation in the Nordics


Corporate forms and incorporation

The main corporate forms in Norway are:

  1. Limited liability companies (AS) In this form of company, the personal assets of the directors and shareholders are protected. It must have a minimum share capital of NOK 30 000. The liability of the individual shareholders is limited to the amount – if any – outstanding of their shares. Only one director is required and there need only be one share.
  2. Public limited companies (ASA) This form of company has more regulation imposed upon it than a limited liability company, and it must have a minimum share capital of NOK 1 000 000.
  3. General partnership with mutual liability (ANS): This corporate form has unlimited liability, so the partners or individuals may become liable for all the debts and liabilities of the business. In a partnership, each partner will be individually responsible for all such debts and liabilities

Corporate taxable profits (ordinary income) are taxed at a flat rate of 27%. The income tax year normally runs from 1 January to 31 December, with assessments being issued in autumn of the following calendar year. Companies engaged in production and pipeline transportation pay special national income tax in addition to ordinary tax.