This is an archived release.
Svalbard price level 17 per cent lower
Results from the 2010 price level survey for Svalbard showed that the general price level for households in Svalbard is 17 per cent lower compared to the mainland. Low prices for alcoholic beverages, tobacco, transport and lower house rents in Svalbard pulled the total price level down.
There are two significant factors that account for the price level difference between Svalbard and mainland Norway. First, there is no VAT or special surcharges for goods and services in Svalbard. Second, the majority have housing subsidies. High transport costs and other costs connected to the provision of goods and services on the other hand pull in the opposite direction and reduce the price level difference compared to mainland Norway.
Alcohol, tobacco, transport and housing cheaper in Svalbard
Since there is no VAT or special surcharges, highly taxed products on the mainland are cheaper in Svalbard. The most significant low price level difference was seen in the consumption group alcoholic beverages and tobacco; 68 per cent lower for Svalbard households.
Another significant lower price level is seen in the consumption group transport; 30 per cent lower compared to the mainland. Purchase of vehicles, repair and maintenance of vehicles is also cheaper for Svalbard households. A noticeably lower price level was seen in the consumption group housing, water, electricity and fuels in 2010. Housing subsidies is the main reason for the lower price level in Svalbard.
Higher price levels for food and non-alcoholic drinks in Svalbard
Price levels for food and non-alcoholic drinks for Svalbard households on the other hand are 20 per cent higher compared to households in mainland Norway. The greatest differences are seen for essential food products like fruits, dairy products, vegetables and bread, which are 60, 34, 32 and 16 per cent higher compared to the mainland respectively. The difference in price levels between the two areas is least for food products like non-alcoholic beverages and sugar, jam, chocolate, confectionery, with 12 and 7 per cent respectively. The high transport cost to Svalbard is a factor that affects the price levels.
Minimal price level differences in clothing, footwear and miscellaneous goods and services
For the rest of the consumption groups, there are minimal price level differences between Svalbard and mainland Norway in 2010. However there are some variations. Price levels of clothing and footwear is 13 per cent cheaper for a Svalbard household. The shopping pattern showed that Svalbard households purchased to a large extent via the Internet and during trips to the mainland.
Svalbard households pay 8 per cent less for the group recreation and culture compared to households in the mainland in 2010. Restaurant service is 7 per cent cheaper for Svalbard households. The price level for eating in restaurants is almost the same as the mainland but alcoholic drinks are a lot cheaper.
|Food and non-alcoholic beverages||119.5||112.4|
|Alcoholic beverages, tobacco||32.0||34.8|
|Clothing and footwear||86.8||83.8|
|Housing, water, electricity, fuels||81.8||73.7|
|Furnishings, household equipment||99.7||102.5|
|Recreation and culture||91.6||87.3|
|Hotels and restaurants||93.2||96.3|
|Miscellaneous goods and services||91.5||94.3|