Public sector
offinnkj, Public purchasing, goods, services, general government, central government, local government, general government enterprisesGeneral government , Public sector

Public purchasing

As from 20 December 2018 the statistics "Public purchasing" will be published with "General government revenue and expenditure".


Key figures

4.5 %

increase in public purchase from 2016 to 2017

Public purchasing, NOK million
20171SharePer cent
2016 - 20172013 - 2017
1The figures for the latest year is provisional.
Total public purchases (A + B)522 507100.04.519.2
A. General government449 19186.05.727.3
Central government excluding defence affairs213 88840.93.726.9
Defence affairs and services32 8686.324.949.8
Local government202 43538.75.224.6
B. General government enterprises73 31614.0-2.0-14.2
Central government excluding oil6 3401.213.347.3
Oil sector60 99411.7-3.7-19.8
Local government enterprices5 9821.11.318.8

See selected tables from this statistics

Table 1 
Public purchasing. NOK million.

Public purchasing. NOK million.
Total public purchases (A + B)438 307461 740477 564499 900522 507
Purchase of goods and services228 975234 504247 374255 626268 634
Social benefits in kind63 47568 02071 65275 33676 428
Gross fixed capital formation145 857159 216158 538168 938177 445
A. General government352 868380 249400 981425 062449 191
Purchase of goods and services178 538190 119201 566209 810223 735
Social benefits in kind63 47568 02071 65275 33676 428
Gross fixed capital formation110 855122 110127 763139 916149 028
A1. Central government190 452208 648219 665232 613246 756
Purchase of goods and services95 504102 944109 203115 163121 692
Social benefits in kind40 04842 74745 51447 83447 687
Gross fixed capital formation54 90062 95764 94869 61677 377
A1.1. Central government excluding defence affairs168 517186 064195 120206 308213 888
Purchase of goods and services83 39790 57096 258101 474107 447
Social benefits in kind40 04842 74745 51447 83447 687
Gross fixed capital formation45 07252 74753 34857 00058 754
A1.2. Defence affairs and services21 93522 58324 54526 30532 868
Purchase of goods and services12 10712 37312 94513 68914 245
Social benefits in kind00000
Gross fixed capital formation9 82810 21011 60012 61618 623
A2. Local government162 416171 601181 316192 449202 435
Purchase of goods and services83 03487 17592 36394 647102 043
Social benefits in kind23 42725 27326 13827 50228 741
Gross fixed capital formation55 95559 15362 81570 30071 651
A2.1. Municipalities129 953139 119146 233156 337164 276
Purchase of goods and services66 97370 02472 95775 06980 237
Social benefits in kind20 97722 76723 33524 18325 282
Gross fixed capital formation42 00346 32849 94157 08558 757
A2.1. Counties32 46332 48235 08336 11238 159
Purchase of goods and services16 06117 15119 40619 57821 806
Social benefits in kind2 4502 5062 8033 3193 459
Gross fixed capital formation13 95212 82512 87413 21512 894
B. General government enterprises85 43981 49176 58374 83873 316
Purchase of goods and services50 43744 38545 80845 81644 899
Social benefits in kind00000
Gross fixed capital formation35 00237 10630 77529 02228 417
B1.1. Central government excluding oil4 3054 8735 2815 5966 340
Purchase of goods and services4 1994 7085 2105 3536 048
Social benefits in kind00000
Gross fixed capital formation10616571243292
B1.2. Oil sector76 09871 23166 81163 33860 994
Purchase of goods and services42 51335 85937 85635 52334 430
Social benefits in kind00000
Gross fixed capital formation33 58535 37228 95527 81526 564
B2. Local government enterprises5 0365 3874 4915 9045 982
Purchase of goods and services3 7253 8182 7424 9404 421
Social benefits in kind00000
Gross fixed capital formation1 3111 5691 7499641 561

About the statistics


Definitions of the main concepts and variables

Public procurements: Defined as the sum of intermediate consumption, social benefits in kind and gross fixed capital formation for general government and unincorporated public enterprises. The definition is not a precise one, but as close as could be without organising a separate collection of data for this purpose.

General government: Defined in the same way as in the National Accounts, i.e. predominantly non-market activities under government control.

Unincorporated public enterprises: State, municipal and county municipal market activities that are not organised as separate legal entities, and companies where municipalities or county municipalities have unlimited economic control.

Intermediate consumption: Procurements of goods and services for use in the production of goods or services.

Social benefits in kind: Procurements of goods and services that are transferred to households.

Gross fixed capital formation: Net acquisitions of fixed capital with duration of more than a year.

Standard classifications

Not relevant

Administrative information

Name and topic

Name: Public purchasing
Topic: Public sector

Responsible division

Division for Public Finance

Regional level

National level only.

Frequency and timeliness


International reporting

Not relevant


The microdata are stored in the SAS and the Oracle databases.


Background and purpose

The purpose is to provide statistics that show the size and composition of public procurements. The statistics started in 1994.

Users and applications

Important users are the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Fisheries the Ministry of Local Government and Modernisation, municipalities, enterprises and mass media.



Equal treatment of users

No external users have access to the statistics and analyses before they are published and accessible simultaneously for all users on ssb.no at 08 am. Prior to this, a minimum of three months' advance notice is given inthe Statistics Release Calendar.

Coherence with other statistics

The statistics are mainly based on input from the statistics on General government revenue and expenditure. This statistics is again based on the international standards for National Accounts - System of National Accounts (the UN et al.) and the European System of Accounts (the EU), plus the IMF's A Manual on Government Finance Statistics. These standards do not include any specific definition of public procurements. Preliminary figures are disseminated for the first time in the year t+1 while the final figures are disseminated in the year t+3. Variances between preliminary and final figures may be considerable due to uncertain preliminary figures for unincorporated public enterprises.

No corresponding short-term statistics are disseminated, but quarterly operating expenses for the units included in the central government fiscal account are disseminated as part of the statistics on Central government fiscal account, revenue and expenditure.

Part of the statistics is included in the statistics on General government revenue and expenditure, which again is part of the National Accounts system.

Legal authority

The Statistics Act, § 2-2.

EEA reference

Council Regulation 3037/90, Commission Regulation 761/93, Council Regulation 3696/93, Council Regulation 2223/96.



The population comprises all state, municipal and county municipal administrative bodies limited according to the National Accounts regulations for general government, as well as unincorporated public enterprises (government units which sell industrial and commercial goods and services to the public). Publicly owned enterprises are not included. The basic sources are the central government's fiscal account, the individual accounts for municipalities and county municipalities, and accounts for other state, municipal and county municipal units (e.g. funds) that are considered part of general government, and unincorporated public enterprises. In practice there may be gaps due to lack of an overview of the population.

Data sources and sampling

Most of the data are collected from the statistics on General government revenue and expenditure. In addition there is a separate collection of accounts for unincorporated public enterprises.

In principle there is total counting of all units of unincorporated public enterprises, but in practice some minor accounts are not collected due to lack of resources and lack of an overview of the population.

Collection of data, editing and estimations

Accounts for unincorporated public enterprises are collected on special forms (Industry Form 2). The one who responds to the enquiry is the individual who is responsible for accounting.

Reporting and record keeping burden

Approximately 30 minutes per respondent for each accounting year by approximately 10 respondents within unincorporated central government enterprises and 500 respondents within unincorporated local government enterprises, totalling approximately 35 day's work for the entire sampling.

For unincorporated public enterprises all totals are carefully checked, as well as other logical connections in and between the profit and loss account and the balance sheet. Checks are also carried out against important items in the enterprises' annual reports.

Seasonal adjustment

Not applicable


Not relevant

Comparability over time and space

One tries to avoid great breaks in the time series by preferably carrying out any large changes in connection with retroactive revisions. For the central government minor breaks may occur, since the specifications in the fiscal account may be adjusted at any time by resolutions in the National Assembly. Breaks in the time series occur relatively seldom for the municipal accounts, since the chart of accounts is established by the Local Government Act. Still from 1990 to 1991 there was a break due to revision of the municipal accounts regulations, and at present a revised chart of accounts is gradually being implemented as part of the KOSTRA project, with the new chart of accounts being fully introduced for the 2001 accounts. This no doubt leads to breaks, but the extent is difficult to determine. For unincorporated public enterprises breaks in the series will mainly occur in connection with changes in the accounting law (new law from 1999) or because of organisational changes, e.g. when units are reorganised as publicly owned enterprises, and thereby excluded from the statistics.

Accuracy and reliability

Sources of error and uncertainty

Most of the data are collected from the statistics on General government revenue and expenditure. The main problem is that public procurements is defined in such a schematic way that for instance own investment activities are regarded as procurements. If this were to have been done differently the statistics would have required considerably more resources. For unincorporated public enterprises processing errors may occur because of wrong entries in the profit and loss account or the balance sheet, or lack of specification of fixed assets in the balance sheet.

The non-respondents are rather few, about 5-10 units per year. These units are not significant either, so the previous year's figures are used if they are available.