Transport and tourism
The statistics show the flow of goods measured in tonnes between the supply side (manufacturers, importers and wholesalers), and the user side (intermediate goods used in manufacturing and other goods-producing industries, agencies, wholesale and retail as well as exports from these industries).

Commodity Flow Survey (discontinued)2014


About the statistics


Name and topic

Name: Commodity Flow Survey (discontinued)
Topic: Transport and tourism

Responsible division

Division for Energy, Environmental and Transport Statistics

Definitions of the main concepts and variables

Date Sent is the date the item was sent from the company's plant / warehouse.

Sender address is the address where the goods / consignment was sent. Often, but not always, this corporate location address. The sender address stated that:

  • Street address with street number
  • Zip tied to despatch Place

Sender address coded into municipal number

Delivery Location address where the goods / consignment was sent, ie the place of delivery to the customer. Delivery place was stated as:

  • Street address with street number
  • Zip tied to the delivery point

Delivery Location encoded into municipal number

Item Amount. Consignment overall weight or volume in kg or m³. When publishing is weight in tons

Value of goods in the consignment. Contains broadcast many different items, it was reported an average value of all the goods in a single consignment

Standard classifications

Standard Industrial Classification, NACE Rev. 2. Standard for division into regions, NUTS 2; standard for regions of the EU and Norway

Administrative information

Regional level


Frequency and timeliness

The survey has been conducted in 2009 for the year 2008.
Actuality: About 70 weeks after the end of the reporting year.

International reporting

Not relevant


The data is stored on long sentence Level.


Background and purpose

The main purpose of commodity transport survey is to gain better knowledge of where the main trade flows is transported within Norway and between Norway and abroad. Commodity flow is measured primarily in terms of tonnes transported and trade value. The survey is important for planning and to prioritize investmenst, improvemnts and development of infrastructure that will benefit the industry.

In 2006 Institute of Transport Economics (TØI) presented a report on the current statistical basis for freight proposed prioritization of development measures. It was concluded that the main weakness in the statistical basis in transport, was the lack of information about the geographic delivery pattern between production location and consumption place domestically. As a consequence of this study was the first commodity flow study in Norway carried out in 2009 for the statistical year 2008.

Users and applications

The results will primarily be used as a basis for transport, traffic and infrastructure planning as well as input in transport models.

Equal treatment of users

Not relevant.

Coherence with other statistics

Commodity transport survey measures basically the outgoing commodity consignments from companies within the mining industry, sanitation and merchandising until consumer, regardless of the mode of transport. Besides Statistics Norway produces transport distributed statistics on a quarterly basis, but the results can hardly be compared.

Legal authority

Statistics Act § 2-2, 2-3.

EEA reference

Not relevant.



The survey was carried out partly as a sample survey on businesses within the industries mining, industry, sanitation and retailing, partly as a registry-based study using data from the largest groupage companies / freight forwarders in Norway. The data from the groupage companies comprises transporting goods from other industries than those strictly covered by the sample survey. For publication which official statistics are only used data from sender businesses that are part of the sample survey. Data from the groupage companies that cover other industries will be used in model context.

Data sources and sampling

The questionnaire was sent to 4,224 companies within industries:
B - Mining and quarrying except oil (05-09 except 06)
C - Manufacturing (10-33)
G - Wholesale trade (45.1 + 46)
E - Waste Management Business (38+ 39)

The sample was drawn by the size of turnover and covers approximately 74% of the turnover of all businesses within these industries. All consignments sent by the biggest groupage companies in Norway, is also obtained. In addition, data for imports and exports derived from Foreign Trade Statistics, and timber shipments are collected from Skogdata.

It was made a questionnaire in Altinn. In addition, it developed its own template in Excel. The template could be sent as an attachment to the Altinn portal. To reduce the response burden, those who have used groupage companies/freght forwarders, could indicate this on the form. Thus they did not need to send information about those last sendings to SSB.

Of the sample was 91 percent approved received.

Collection of data, editing and estimations

All data were recorded and processed in ISEE, Statistics Norway's integratied system for editing and estimating. In the editing system Controls were buillt to identify entry errors or other obvious errors in the data. The data that were received, was analyzed at macro level, and consignments of goods with values above 200 tons were examined manually. In all, it brought in 63 million consignments. It was registered 48,875,414 domestic items. The remaining are sent to and from Norway reported by groupage companies.

Partial missing was handled by devices that lacked information on key analysis variables either were removed from the sample or were estimated on the basis of other given information.

Seasonal adjustment

Not relevant.


Not relevant.

Comparability over time and space

Previous commodity transport survey was conducted in 2009 for the statistical year 2008. The scope of the industries is the same for the 2008 and 2014. Research design and statistical methods used to calculate the total numbers are very different.

The main difference is that all the consignments which the largest freight companies in Norway are brought in for the 2014 survey. Accordingly, the number of transmissions are significantly higher in the new study. Instead of an estimation method of weights used in 2008, the imputing by nearest-neighbor method has been chosen for the 2014 data. The statistics in 2008 included not last transport out of Norway (export) or into Norway (import).

Together with data from the transport mode urveys conducted by Statistics Norway, commodity transport survey provides a more comprehensive picture of the commodity flow in Norway. However, it is only a part of the domestic commodity flows that ar mapped in the new survey, since it is limited to a range of business areas. The total amount of goods transported domestically was in 2014 estimated at 400 million tonnes, while commodity flow survey for this year thus covering about 65 million tons.

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Accuracy and reliability

Sources of error and uncertainty

Imputation and estimation

It is carried out an extensive methodological work. To correct partial missing for goods consignment weight or value, it is performed regression analyzes within the industry and imputed missing values.

Within the four industries covered by the sample survey, there were 23,413 businesses With no sending data, so called total missing. Instead of an estimation method with weights, data were imputing by using data from the nearest-neighbor method. Cut off is decided to Companies with turnover below one million NOK, and therefore 6895 companies got estimated data. This lead to imputing approximately 800,000 consignments, small number compared to the total number of broadcasts.

Missing and sampling errors

Total non-response is about 9 percent for sample survey. Some of the missing are caused by errors in the industry code in the business register, or that the businesshas ceased, been sold etc. The data from groupage companies, foreign trade and forest data are looke upon as censuses - no samples.

Most companies receiving imputed consignments are small. Sampling errors can occur when imputation of the number of consignments, especially distribution pattern.


Not relevant.