Local Government Accounting in Norway: Central Norms Create Confusing Information at the Local Level

  • Helge Mauland
  • Frode Mellemvik


Norwegian local government consists of 435 municipalities and 19 counties. There are approximately 4.4 mill. inhabitants in Norway and 90% of them are living in 10% of the local governments. The Norwegian Act of Local Government (ALG) enacted in 1993 has detailed regulations concerning the preparation of local governments’ budgets and accounts. In accordance with the ALG the Ministry of Local Government and Regional Development (MLGRD) has issued comprehensive central regulations for budgeting and accounting procedures. Most probably Norwegian local governments are facing extensive changes in budgeting and accounting rules. Several years ago a pilot project for more precise recording of local government data to the government was implemented. The pilot project was terminated in 1997 and has been evaluated as a success in 1998. Full-scale implementation with minor amendments is expected in 1999 and 2000 in all of Norway’s 435 local governments. The implementation of a new local government reporting system necessitates another set of central regulations replacing the 1993-regulations. The intention is to put the regulations in force from the beginning of the year 2000. By Norwegian standards this is a very ambitious time schedule.


Local Government Central Government Total Asset Balance Sheet Capital Statement 
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© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Helge Mauland
  • Frode Mellemvik

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