International accounts

Updated: 6 December 2023

Next update: 6 March 2024

Current account balance
Current account balance
3rd quarter 2023
193 032
NOK million
Balance of payments. NOK million
Balance of payments. NOK million
3rd quarter 20224th quarter 20221st quarter 20232nd quarter 20233rd quarter 2023
Current account:
Current account balance624 229347 111307 424180 325197 240
Balance of goods and services575 985333 682247 929140 646152 186
Balance of income and current transfers48 24413 42959 49539 67945 054
Capital transfers, patents, licenses etc, net-2642 1369091 847504
Net lending (+)/ Net borrowing (-), current account transactions624 493344 975306 515178 478196 736
MEMO: incl. reinvested earnings
Current account balance620 482343 115303 428175 045193 032
Balance of income and current transfers44 4979 43355 49934 39940 846
Net lending (+)/ Net borrowing (-), current account transactions620 746340 979302 519173 198192 528
Financial account:
Opening balance10 743 77811 514 92511 609 96713 667 74714 776 227
Net lending (+)/ Net borrowing (-), financial account transactions545 512277 731307 322262 840197 088
Other changes225 635-182 6891 750 458845 640-838 307
Closing balance11 514 92511 609 96713 667 74714 776 22714 135 008
Net errors and omissions-75 234-63 2484 80389 6424 560
Explanation of symbols

Selected tables and charts from this statistics

  • Financial account, transactions. By functional category and financial instrument. NOK million
    Financial account, transactions. By functional category and financial instrument. NOK million1
    3rd quarter 20224th quarter 20221st quarter 20232nd quarter 20233rd quarter 2023
    Foreign assets
    Direct investment116 49369 48930 32319 936-26 288
    Equity and Investment Fund shares/units35 552102 80215 62721 500-1 589
    Debt instruments80 941-33 31314 696-1 564-24 699
    Portofolio investment484 687680 20861 990255 619148 310
    Equity and Investment Fund shares238 469319 623166 143220 365693
    Equity securities239 730330 095169 292214 828-2 881
    Investment Fund shares-1 261-10 472-3 1495 5373 574
    Debt securities246 218360 585-104 15335 254147 617
    Other investments433 070-320 910151 102-161 774129 103
    Other equity04000
    Currency and deposits138 936-248 012126 710-31 926-24 531
    Loans-31 670111 395-4 269-90 096176 650
    Trade credits and advances21 599-9 089-61 540-41 39431 551
    Other accounts recievable/payable303 474-175 49589 109596-55 428
    Reserve assets (IMF breakdown)34 437-84 62744 1512 68412 733
    Assets - Special Drawing Rights (SDRs)3501 524-1 3983011 658
    Reserve position in the IMF-14310206-423
    Other reserve assets34 101-86 46145 5292 37711 498
    Liabilities
    Direct investment51 08947 90441 691-27 111-40 783
    Equity and Investment Fund shares/units22 25648 11213 371-13 5361 753
    Reinvestment of earnings7 7447 7447 7447 7447 744
    Debt instruments28 833-20828 320-13 575-42 536
    Portofolio investment81 90955 448-42 950-40 87156 939
    Equity and Investment Fund shares1 744493-11 967-10 679-5 334
    Equity securities724-3 852-10 392-15 562-9 514
    Investment Fund shares1 0204 345-1 5754 8834 180
    Debt securities80 16554 955-30 983-30 19262 273
    Other investments390 177-36 923-18 497-78 39350 614
    Other equity00000
    Currency and deposits4 271-88 26174 7179 984-36 842
    Loans126 464168 908-228 830-99 01523 509
    Trade credits and advances11 308-2 952-7 1023 9234 946
    Other accounts recievable/payable248 816-115 040137 3784 64759 721
    Liabilities - Special Drawing Rights (SDRs)00000
    NET LENDING, FINANCIAL ACCOUNT545 512277 731307 322262 840197 088
    1Transactions in financial derivatives are included in other accounts receivable/payable under other investments in the balance of payments’ financial account. There is considerable uncertainty in the method used to calculate the transaction figures in derivatives, the figures under this item must therefore be used with some caution.
    Explanation of symbols
  • International Investment Position. By functional category and financial instrument. NOK million
    International Investment Position. By functional category and financial instrument. NOK million
    3rd quarter 20224th quarter 20221st quarter 20232nd quarter 20233rd quarter 2023
    Foreign assets
    Direct investment2 747 4522 766 5212 849 0322 892 7452 838 250
    Equity and Investment Fund shares/units1 745 4731 821 9931 858 7431 890 3971 873 515
    Debt instruments1 001 979944 528990 2891 002 348964 735
    Portofolio investment15 102 23815 568 96117 394 81618 477 51617 838 334
    Equity and Investment Fund shares9 894 09110 235 75011 783 70012 789 50012 228 686
    Equity securities9 355 9909 702 06711 220 31812 202 62211 647 883
    Investment Fund shares538 101533 683563 382586 878580 803
    Debt securities5 208 1475 333 2115 611 1165 688 0165 609 648
    Other investments3 479 0562 956 3753 304 0213 244 4533 336 343
    Other equity2 5172 5212 5212 5212 521
    Currency and deposits1 278 884991 2451 190 6231 182 9161 136 940
    Loans862 760950 975983 212904 9331 065 305
    Trade credits and advances216 422200 129149 137110 893141 133
    Other accounts recievable/payable1 094 838787 589953 5051 017 120963 507
    Reserve assets (IMF breakdown)851 446711 287828 535855 051839 151
    Assets - Special Drawing Rights (SDRs)75 18772 32876 07077 38077 387
    Reserve position in the IMF15 25514 68415 74615 95615 203
    Other reserve assets761 004624 275736 719761 715746 561
    Liabilities
    Direct investment2 218 6332 277 7632 343 8232 329 3162 290 121
    Equity and Investment Fund shares/units1 395 9181 480 9371 487 6131 473 7561 489 176
    Debt instruments822 715796 826856 210855 560800 945
    Portofolio investment4 277 2334 281 0464 379 0914 372 2194 428 983
    Equity and Investment Fund shares1 280 3661 322 1011 294 4531 263 0191 325 275
    Equity securities1 134 4491 167 6011 129 7841 089 3631 152 960
    Investment Fund shares145 917154 500164 669173 656172 315
    Debt securities2 996 8672 958 9453 084 6383 109 2003 103 708
    Other investments4 169 4013 834 3683 985 7433 992 0033 997 966
    Other equity00000
    Currency and deposits1 850 6751 706 5591 843 0791 879 7871 822 213
    Loans1 096 5771 208 8871 011 951921 322937 935
    Trade credits and advances60 18656 95651 71356 41860 448
    Other accounts recievable/payable1 051 863755 533962 2901 014 6451 059 804
    Liabilities - Special Drawing Rights (SDRs)72 29468 20573 13674 18172 643
    NET ASSETS11 514 92511 609 96713 667 74714 776 22714 135 008
    Explanation of symbols
  • Current and capital account. NOK million
    Current and capital account. NOK million
    Current and capital account
    3rd quarter 20224th quarter 20221st quarter 20232nd quarter 20233rd quarter 2023
    Exports, total986 392759 579642 489568 318564 903
    ¬ Goods (FOB)840 440626 700515 875431 093415 660
    ¬¬ Crude oil and natural gas669 418454 368348 034264 601255 781
    ¬¬ Ships4 7831 7068061 2132 050
    ¬¬ Petroleum activities, various goods146117230134249
    ¬¬ Other goods166 093170 509166 805165 145157 580
    ¬ Services145 952132 879126 614137 225149 243
    ¬¬ Gross receipts, shipping46 06741 92241 19542 08739 537
    ¬¬ Petroleum activities, various services7 9607 5946 3357 6607 821
    ¬¬ Pipeline transport3 3073 3292 6612 5853 287
    ¬¬ Travel24 7978 36810 69516 22527 822
    ¬¬ Transport and communication12 66912 36111 07112 68213 135
    ¬¬¬ Land transport, export1 4001 4411 5461 7231 785
    ¬¬¬ Supply, export4 1782 9883 9634 4694 193
    ¬¬¬ Air transport, export3 0163 6902 2692 6973 270
    ¬¬¬ Services related to transport, export3 4153 5232 5502 9623 156
    ¬¬¬ Postal and courier services, export660719743831731
    ¬¬ Financial and business services26 87531 09428 24629 00830 697
    ¬¬¬ Financial and insurance services, export9 57310 0158 6078 9548 938
    ¬¬¬ Audit services, juridical- and technical services, export7 0608 1156 5007 1857 137
    ¬¬¬ Research and development, export1 0771 4371 5911 5701 869
    ¬¬¬ Other business services, export9 16511 52711 54811 29912 753
    ¬¬ Other services21 95625 91024 98426 00125 291
    ¬¬¬ Construction, repairs and installation, export6 5067 2016 9567 2635 981
    ¬¬¬ Recycle and trash handling, export2 1892 4632 2102 3742 731
    ¬¬¬ Retail trade, hotel and restaurant , export1 5001 3891 3241 5591 529
    ¬¬¬ Publishing, film, music and broadcasting services, export313441585572479
    ¬¬¬ Telecommunication services, export2 3182 8393 1593 5143 559
    ¬¬¬ Information services, export6 9199 4809 1068 9839 188
    ¬¬¬ Other personal and government services, export2 2112 0971 6441 7361 824
    MEMO: Services export when import of goods FOB143 547130 191124 914135 346147 705
    Imports, total410 407425 896394 560427 672412 717
    ¬ Goods (CIF)263 374282 559260 645271 627246 155
    ¬¬ Ships1 8474 5452 9124 5722 061
    ¬¬ Petroleum activities, various goods1 4922 2691 5762 1842 579
    ¬¬ Other goods260 035275 745256 157264 871241 515
    MEMO: Import of goods FOB253 389272 930251 670262 544237 730
    ¬ Services147 033143 337133 915156 045166 562
    ¬¬ Operating costs shipping, excl. bunkers18 82617 34213 62213 84313 188
    ¬¬ Petroleum activities, various services7 5789 0736 8648 2677 760
    ¬¬ Travel48 78337 40335 20551 11063 804
    ¬¬ Transport and communication8 1288 7177 8869 1218 437
    ¬¬¬ Land transport, import1918191919
    ¬¬¬ Ocean transport, import200200200200200
    ¬¬¬ Air transport, import2 3412 4172 1252 8572 667
    ¬¬¬ Services related to transport, import5 3935 7415 2685 6045 388
    ¬¬¬ Postal and courier services, import175341274441163
    ¬¬ Financial and business services25 67729 83327 55730 84530 749
    ¬¬¬ Financial and insurance services, import5 8636 7506 4196 5876 491
    ¬¬¬ Audit services, juridical- and technical services, import4 6985 5485 7446 6826 928
    ¬¬¬ Research and development, import1 5392 1641 7281 7571 694
    ¬¬¬ Other business services, import13 57715 37113 66615 81915 636
    ¬¬ Other services38 04140 96942 78142 85942 623
    ¬¬¬ Construction, repairs and installation, import7 5108 5517 6038 0508 120
    ¬¬¬ Recycle and trash handling, import1 5541 6041 5391 9771 370
    ¬¬¬ Retail trade, hotel and restaurant, import652803521567675
    ¬¬¬ Publishing, film, music and broadcasting services, import5 6996 1156 2726 1476 818
    ¬¬¬ Telecommunication services, import1 6851 6981 8452 1232 160
    ¬¬¬ Information services, import16 79318 71718 67319 36218 635
    ¬¬¬ Other personal and government services, import4 1483 4816 3284 6334 845
    MEMO: Service import when import of goods FOB154 613150 278141 190163 249173 449
    Balance of goods and services575 985333 682247 929140 646152 186
    ¬ Balance of goods577 066344 141255 230159 466169 505
    ¬ Balance of services-1 081-10 459-7 301-18 820-17 319
    From abroad156 023208 529179 753246 998195 377
    ¬ Compensation of employees1 5071 5211 5871 5491 586
    ¬ Interest received46 00895 72970 97080 08081 722
    ¬¬Direct investment, interst receivable6 6069 75410 26911 86110 857
    ¬¬Other investment, interest receivable39 40285 97560 70168 21970 865
    ¬ Dividends etc.82 92883 03580 369135 70185 125
    ¬¬Direct investment, dividends etc receivable28 63443 16518 01138 19324 424
    ¬¬Portfolio ivestment, dividends etc. receivable54 29439 87062 35897 50860 701
    ¬ Reinvested earnings4 7954 7954 7954 7954 795
    ¬ Current transfers20 78523 44922 03224 87322 149
    To abroad111 469199 038124 197212 542154 474
    ¬ Compensation of employees11 55112 07511 00812 34012 392
    ¬ Interest paid30 06143 84856 60861 21867 139
    ¬¬Direct investment, interest payable3 6296 1986 7667 2378 009
    ¬¬Other investment, interest payable26 43237 65049 84253 98159 130
    ¬ Dividends etc.25 38787 76117 21879 19130 258
    ¬¬Direct investment, dividends etc. payable15 16063 0974 87652 80717 663
    ¬¬Portfolio investment, dividends etc. payable10 22724 66412 34226 38412 595
    ¬ Reinvested earnings8 5428 7918 79110 0759 003
    ¬ Current transfers from general government12 94924 2959 11626 80812 259
    ¬ Other current transfers22 97922 26821 45622 91023 423
    Balance of income and current transfers48 24413 42959 49539 67945 054
    ¬ Compensation of employees and investment income (Primary income), net59 69732 60564 09659 30154 436
    ¬ Current transfers (Secondary income), net-15 143-23 114-8 540-24 845-13 533
    Current account balance624 229347 111307 424180 325197 240
    Capital transfers to abroad, net1642 5729331 847604
    Acquisitions of patents, licenses etc. net-428-436-240-100
    Net lending624 493344 975306 515178 478196 736
    MEMO: incl. reinvested earnings
    Balance of income and current transfers44 4979 43355 49934 39940 846
    Current account balance620 482343 115303 428175 045193 032
    Net lending620 746340 979302 519173 198192 528
    Explanation of symbols
  • Current and capital account. Country breakdown. Current prices. NOK million
    Current and capital account. Country breakdown. Current prices. NOK million
    Balance of goodsBalance of servicesCurrent account balance
    202120222021202220212022
    The world655 0001 647 238-12 903-48 560643 8591 714 349
    EU728 2391 839 713-43 641-89 700560 0591 681 537
    Other European countries-12 215-7 5181 3731 845-12 085-16 069
    Africa10 807-38 0534 7845 24235 268-7 751
    North-America-14 464-54 16014 09325 31794 970120 245
    Latin America and the Caribbean-8 710-12 5861 7552 5222 0774 571
    Asia, Oceania and polar regions-54 803-71 04610 4227 597-1 151-21 461
    The figures for 2020 were corrected on 22 December 2022
    Explanation of symbols
  • International Investment Position. By functional category and selected countires. NOK million
    International Investment Position. By functional category and selected countires. NOK million1
    TotalDirect investmentPortofolio investmentOther investmentsReserve assets
    2nd quarter 20233rd quarter 20232nd quarter 20233rd quarter 20232nd quarter 20233rd quarter 20232nd quarter 20233rd quarter 20232nd quarter 20233rd quarter 2023
    Foreign assets
    All countries25 469 76524 852 0782 892 7452 838 25018 477 51617 838 3343 244 4533 336 343855 051839 151
    United States8 607 2518 640 656416 878420 5747 415 7557 217 503396 943638 522377 675364 057
    United Kingdom1 715 9961 756 383244 003237 7861 058 6521 036 270355 660423 57257 68158 755
    Japan1 310 4981 263 46112 01512 1151 236 9331 199 17812 3524 67549 19847 493
    Germany1 519 1691 293 319134 773128 865870 885819 354416 988247 79896 52397 302
    Sweden1 328 3341 270 157311 745310 588615 264586 151399 971372 1181 3541 300
    Switzerland646 924621 04321 52821 453571 306548 17049 47846 9934 6124 427
    China193 814177 38013 6193 814165 610157 4813 9325 66110 65310 424
    Liabilities
    All countries10 693 53810 717 0702 329 3162 290 1214 372 2194 428 9833 992 0033 997 96600
    Luxembourg1 345 5761 328 15853 44657 8771 224 5041 207 07467 62663 20700
    United Kingdom1 561 4541 615 09986 922101 740597 836601 630876 696911 72900
    United States1 495 0771 537 816143 327148 467815 165853 459536 585535 89000
    Sweden1 026 3331 001 645165 332165 159223 269218 558637 732617 92800
    China27 18918 29822 49213 6731 7221 0272 9753 59800
    1Due to changes in reporting from one of the data sources, there is uncertenty associated with the country breakdown. Revisions may be expected in the next release.
    The figures for International investment position with country breakdown were published 1 March 2023 at 11.40.
    Explanation of symbols
  • External debt. NOK million
    External debt. NOK million1
    4th quarter 20221st quarter 20232nd quarter 20233rd quarter 2023
    General government1 328 8241 196 0181 096 1621 166 586
    Short-term
    Currency and deposits0000
    Debt securities11 33712 66515 68716 408
    Loans506 628262 569228 383272 720
    Trade credits and advances3120
    Other accounts recievable/payable96 565175 239156 552187 327
    Long-term
    Currency and deposits0000
    Debt securities388 676411 647390 970393 066
    Loans325 615333 897304 570297 065
    Trade credits and advances0000
    Other accounts recievable/payable0000
    Central bank83 660100 977115 712121 402
    Short-term
    Currency and deposits7263023
    Debt securities0000
    Loans0000
    Trade credits and advances0000
    Other accounts recievable/payable15 41127 68441 41048 694
    Long-term
    Liabilities - Special Drawing Rights (SDRs)68 20573 13674 18172 643
    Currency and deposits0000
    Debt securities0000
    Loans371319142
    Trade credits and advances0000
    Other accounts recievable/payable0000
    Deposit-taking corporations except the central bank3 856 4334 104 8364 206 9464 149 590
    Short-term
    Currency and deposits1 553 9241 684 4241 717 3621 659 976
    Debt securities277 323263 835273 482303 907
    Loans....
    Trade credits and advances0000
    Other accounts recievable/payable240 764285 569330 002326 243
    Long-term
    Currency and deposits152 628158 629162 395162 214
    Debt securities1 631 7941 712 3791 723 7051 697 250
    Loans....
    Trade credits and advances0000
    Other accounts recievable/payable0000
    Other sectors1 524 3961 668 5501 682 3811 664 096
    Short-term
    Currency and deposits0000
    Debt securities12 10020 28218 32813 431
    Loans70 173116 64090 12269 107
    Trade credits and advances56 95351 71256 41660 448
    Other accounts recievable/payable439 885512 073528 735540 431
    Long-term
    Currency and deposits0000
    Debt securities637 715663 830687 028679 646
    Loans306 434298 714298 156299 001
    Trade credits and advances0000
    Other accounts recievable/payable1 1365 2993 5962 032
    Direct investment796 826856 210855 560800 945
    SUM TOTAL7 590 1397 926 5917 956 7617 902 619
    1The external debt position shows the gross debt for the main institutional sectors. Shares and other equity are not included in the statistics.
    Explanation of symbols

About the statistics

The international accounts give an overview of the economic relationships between Norwegian residents and nonresidents. They comprise the international investment position (IIP), including other changes in financial assets and liabilities, and the balance of payments (BOP). As of 2020, the BOP and IIP Statistics are presented together under the heading International accounts. The international account consists of the current account, the capital account and the financial account. The current account shows exports and imports and other international transfers. The capital account shows capital transfers and transactions in intangible assets. The financial account shows net foreign financial assets and liabilities.

The BOP is a statistical statement of all transactions made between entities in one country and the rest of the world over a defined period of time, such as a quarter or a year. The IIP is a statistical statement that shows at a point in time the value of financial assets of residents of an economy that are claims on nonresidents, and the liabilities of residents of an economy to nonresidents. The difference between the assets and liabilities is the net position in the IIP and represents either a net claim on or a net liability to the rest of the world.

The Norwegian BOP and IIP is presented in accordance with the latest internationally approved guidelines. These are specified in "The Balance of Payments Manual, 6th edition" (BPM6), published by the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The underlying principles and definitions presented in the BPM6 are in full accordance with the international statistical framework for the National Accounts, as laid down in the manual "System of National Accounts 2008" (2008 SNA). 2008 SNA is a joint publication by several international organizations, including the United Nations and the IMF.

The European Union (EU) has compiled its own edition of the National Accounts manual, "European System of Accounts 2010" (ESA 2010), which accommodates special conditions in member countries. According to the European Economic Area Agreement (EEA Agreement), Norway is obligated to comply with ESA 2010. The reporting of National Accounts data, as well as BOP and IIP data, to EU's statistical office Eurostat, has a legal basis in regulation (EC) No 184/2005.

Basic concepts and recording principles

Like the National Accounts, the BOP and IIP accounts are constructed around three basic concepts: statistical units, economic values and transactions. Briefly, the accounting systems describe transactions and positions between statistical units in which economic values are provided or received in exchange for other economic values.

  • Statistical units are institutional units which make economic decisions on an independent basis and can present complete accounts for their activities. The institutional unit normally coincides with a body corporate, e.g. a limited liability company or legal person.
  • Economic items can either be real resources, i.e. goods and services, or financial items representing various claims and liabilities.
  • The basic criterion for entering a transaction in the BOP or a position in the IIP, is that it involves an exchange between a domestic entity (resident) and a foreign entity (non-resident). Residents are institutional units that engage and intend to continue to engage in economic activities and transactions within a country's territory, with one year or more serving as the conventional guideline.

Positions

Positions are shown as the value of a financial item which, for example, an enterprise is in possession of at a point in time. Financial objects can be, for example, shares, other securities or different types of loans. In principle, stocks must be registered at market value. See description of valuation below.

Transactions

A transaction should in principle be allocated to the period in which there is a change of ownership of the economic value. Conventionally, it is often said that a change of ownership has taken place when both parties of the transaction enters the transaction in their books or accounts. In the case of exports and imports of goods, it is the moment that the goods cross the border and are registered through customs declarations, that determines the time of recording of the transaction and consequently the change of ownership.

All transactions shall be valued at market prices. Market prices are defined as amounts of money that buyers pay to acquire something from sellers; the exchanges are made between independent parties and based on commercial considerations only. Total exports and total imports shall be recorded at free-on-board (f.o.b.) prices. F.o.b prices are the value when passing the border of the country of exports. On a detailed commodity level, cost-insurance-freight (c.i.f.) prices are used for imports, i.e. including transport and insurance costs up to the border of the importing country. The exchange rate on the transaction date or the average rate for the shortest period applicable shall be used for converting transactions in foreign currencies into the national currency. Stocks of assets and liabilities are to be valued at prices or rates in effect at the time to which the balance sheet relates.

Other changes

Income and expenditure are defined in the National Accounts and BoP excluding gains and losses, irrespective of whether they are realised or unrealised. Such items, however, help to explain total balance sheet changes that take place during a period and are registered on the account for revaluation.

Income and expenditure

Income and expenditure are defined in the National Accounts and BoP excluding gains and losses, irrespective of whether they are realised or unrealised. Such items, however, help to explain total balance sheet changes that take place in the course of a period and are registered on the account for revaluation.

Assets and liabilities

Assets and liabilities are the components of the balance sheets of the total economy and institutional sectors. In contrast to the accounts that show economic flows, a balance sheet shows the positions of assets and liabilities held at one point in time by each unit or sector or the economy as a whole.

An asset is a store of value representing a benefit or series of benefits accruing to the economic owner by holding or using the entity over a period of time. It is a means of carrying forward value from one accounting period to another.

A liability is established when one unit (the debtor) is obliged, under specific circumstances, to provide a payment or series of payments to another unit (the creditor).

Double entry bookkeeping

International Accounts are based on the rules for double entry bookkeeping. All transactions are represented by two entries, a credit and debit entry. Most transactions are those in which economic items are provided or received in exchange for other economic items, entailing that offsetting credit and debit entries will normally be registered.

For example, exports of a good will be registered in External Trade Statistics and recorded as a credit entry in the current account, whereas the accompanying increase in foreign assets, e.g. in the form of increased deposits abroad, is registered in financial account and recorded as a transaction on the debit side of the BOP accounts. In other cases when items are given away rather than exchanged, or a recording is one-sided for other reasons, there is only one recording in the data sources. In these cases, a counter entry is constructed, in this example in the form of a transfer so that the double entry requirement is satisfied.

Structure

The International Accounts is an integrated part of the National Accounts and is constructed as a mirror image of the institutional sector "Rest of the World" in the National Accounts. In the BOP and IIP, transactions and positions are seen from Norway's point of view, while in the institutional sector accounts they will be seen from the perspective of the rest of the world. A surplus on Norway's current account will in the National Accounts appear as a deficit for the sector "Rest of the World".

The BOP consists of three main parts: a current account, which shows current transactions with the rest of the world, a capital showing capital transactions, and a financial account, which records investment transactions in the form of purchases and sales of financial instruments.

The table below illustrates the statement of transactions and positions in the BoP and IIPs (eller IAs) current, capital and financial accounts:

1) Current account balance

Balance of goods and services
Balance of income and current transfers

2) Capital transfers to abroad, net

3) Net lending, current- and capital account

4) Financial account, assets/liabilities

Direct investment
Portfolio investment
Other investment
Reserve assets

5) Net lending, financial account

6) Errors and omissions

The financial statements are presented as shown in the following table, broken down by functions (direct investment, portfolio investment, other financial investment and international reserves):

7) The financial position of at the beginning of the reference period

8) Investments during period (asset)

9) Borrowing

10) Gains, losses and other changes (netto)

11) The financial position of at the end of the reference period

Following definitions applies

The relationship between current- and capital account and the transactions in the financial account:

1+ 2 =3

4 assets – 4 liabilities = 5

3 – 5 = 6

Consistent International Accounts requires:

(3) = (5)

The relationship between positions and change in positions in the financial account:

7 + 8 – 9 + 10 = 11

Description of the accounts

The definitional relationship between the current account and the financial account is that a current account surplus, adjusted for net capital transfers and net acquisitions of patents and copyrights etc, increases net foreign assets (or reduces net liabilities), while a deficit on the current account will reduce net assets (or increase net liabilities).

The current account comprises, first, exports and imports of goods and services, with the balance of goods and services as a balancing item. In addition, data are provided for compensation of employees, investment income and expenditure as well as current transfers to and from the rest of the world. The balance for this component is net income and current transfers. The total balance of the current account is the sum of the balances of these two components.

The capital and financial account shows how transactions recorded in the current account result in changes in foreign assets and liabilities, and in addition to purchases and sales of financial instruments includes capital transfers. This entails that the balance on the current account must be adjusted for net capital transfers in order to arrive at net lending.

The financial account also includes transactions that do not have a counter entry in the current account. One example would be a resident who uses funds in a foreign bank account to repay a loan raised abroad.

Net lending

Total asset transactions less total liability transactions result in net lending. By adjusting net lending for valuation changes and other balance sheet changes not caused by transactions, we arrive at changes in Norway's net foreign assets/liabilities.

Net lending, current account =
Current account balance + Capital transfers to abroad, net - non-financial net investment

Net lending, financial account = Net acquiring of financial assets – net borrowing

Net errors and omissions are derived from net lending from the two accounts and can be derived from the current account minus the same item derived from the financial accounts. Although the BoP accounts are, in principle, balanced, imbalances occur due to imperfections in source data and compilation.

In addition to the classifications and categories described in the international BOP, IIP and National Accounts manuals, it may be mentioned that the Norwegian BOP, IIP and National Accounts make use of the product classification CPA (Classification of Products by Activity) of the EU and sector of the BPM6, 2008 SNA and ESA 2010. For more details, please check https://www.ssb.no/en/klass/klassifikasjoner/39.

Country Codes are based on the International Standard ISO 3166.

Functional categories

Direct investment:

Direct investment is a cross-border financial investment made by an investor for the purpose of acquiring a lasting interest in a foreign enterprise, and exerting a degree of influence on that enterprise's operations. An investment by owning 20 per cent or more of the ordinary shares is considered always a direct investment. The establishment of a subsidiary abroad is an example of a direct investment.

Portfolio investment:

Portfolio investment covers transactions in equities, other securities, and financial derivatives, except where these transactions relate to direct investment or reserve assets category. The Government Pension Fund – Global is not part of the reserve assets, though it is owned by the government and administrated by Norges Bank. This is therefore treated as portfolio investment as concerns investment abroad. Most important are shares and other equities, bonds and money market instruments (certificates and Treasury bills).

Other investments:

Other financial investments is a residual category that covers all investments that are not included in direct investment, portfolio investments and international reserves.

Reserve assets:

Reserve assets consist of those external assets that are readily available to and controlled by monetary authorities for direct financing of payment imbalances, for indirectly regulating the magnitude of such imbalances through intervention in exchange markets to affect the currency exchange rate and /or other purposes. In Norway, Norges Bank have reserve assets. International reserves basically consist of assets only, i.e. any foreign central banks' holdings of assets in Norway (for instance Norwegian securities) are not considered "reserve liabilities", but as portfolio investment in Norway.

The classification of financial assets and liabilities:

The financial accounts include a limited number of financial instrument groups with detailed claims and debt items in the balance sheets of institutional units. The financial instrument links one entity claims to another sector’s debt items. The financial instruments are grouped in claim and debt items with similar economic functions. For example, the payment function is characteristic of coins, notes and salary accounts, while credit is procured through different types of loans. In addition, the liquidity ratio has been the determinant factor for the ranking of financial assets in the classification.

Classification of financial assets and liabilities in the financial accounts is based on the recommendations of the SNA 2008 and ESA 2010. The classifications are described below:

Equity and other shares:

The instrument includes ordinary shares in limited liability companies, shares in general partnerships and shares in mutual funds. Shares in foreign companies are also included. Furthermore, the instrument includes tradable Norwegian equity certificates and general government capital contributions in public enterprises and the state lending institutions.

Dept securities:

Comprise short and long-term securities. Short-term securities is defined as negotiable securities with original maturity of maximum one year, while long-term securities comprise instruments defined as tradable standardised debentures with original maturity of more than one year.

Currency and deposits:

Comprise Norwegian and foreign notes and coins, all types of deposits with commercial banks and savings banks, Norges Bank and foreign banks.

Loans:

This financial instrument includes lending forms other than tradable debentures and certificates. Short-term loans are mainly quantified on the basis of the specifications in accounting statistics for financial corporations. The instrument comprises building loans, factoring, bank overdrafts, operating and working credit. Long-term loans comprise all loans other than short-term loans (mortgage bond issues, other medium and long-term repayment loans and financial leasing).

Trade credits:

Financial claims arising from the direct extension of credit by suppliers and buyers for goods and services.

Insurance technical reserves:

The instrument includes individual insurance savings and group insurance savings in private life insurance companies and total capital in autonomous municipal and private pension funds. Prepayments of premiums and reserves against outstanding claims in non-life insurance companies are also included.

Other claims:

Comprise claims and debt that is due to differences in timing between transactions and payments. For example credit extended to a customer/supplier credit, deferred tax claims/liabilities. Included are also other financial items that do not belong to the previously listed instruments. Derivatives recorded in the accounting statistics are included.

Reserve assets/liabilities IMF:

The foreign exchange reserves and claims on the International Monetary Fund (IMF) together constitute Norges Bank's international reserves. Claims on the IMF consist of three components: SDR accounts (Special Drawing Rights), reserve positions in the IMF and loans to the IMF (Poverty Reduction and Growth Facility).

Valution

Market value:

Market prices are defined as amounts of money that willing buyers pay to acquire something from willing sellers; the exchanges are made between independent parties and on the basis of commercial considerations only. The exchange rate on the position date or the average rate for the shortest period applicable shall be used for converting positions in foreign currencies into the national currency. Stocks of assets and liabilities are to be valued at prices or rates in effect at the time to which the balance sheet relates.

Name: International accounts
Topic: External economy

6 March 2024

Division for National Accounts

National level

Quarterly statistics. The first version for quarter k t is published after k+60 days, followed by revisions in the following quarterly publications. The final version is published in August/September year t+2.

Reporting to Eurostat, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Organization for Economic Co-orporation and Development (OECD) and Bank for International Settlement (BIS).

Microdata are based on different sources

The purpose of the BOP and IIP Statistics is to provide reliable information on residents of Norway’s economic relationships with non-residents. The statistics are an integrated part of the National Accounts using the same principles and definitions.

The statistics is set to meet the international requirements given in the BPM. The international guidelines in BPM are revised during the last several years, with the latest update published in 2009 by the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The sixth edition of the manual, BPM6, is the current version and is implemented in the Norwegian BOP and IIP Statistics in December 2014. Back data based on the guidelines from BPM6 is implemented in both the current- and capital account and the financial account.

The current- and capital account has time series going back to 1981, while the financial account has time series going back to 2005 (BOP) and 2012 (IIP). The current- and capital account has time series going back to 1981.

The main users are international organizations, IMF, Eurostat, OECD and BIS. The Balance of Payments and the International investment position are used by market analytics within finance and the business sector in general, and by governmental agencies for economic policy purposes. Used in the National Accounts, the BOP and the IIP give an exact mirror image of the sector Rest of The World in the national Accounts.

No external users have access to the statistics and analyses before they are published and accessible simultaneously for all users on ssb.no at 08.00 am. Prior to this, a minimum of three months' advance notice is given in the Statistics Release Calendar. This is one of Statistics Norway’s key principles for ensuring that all users are treated equally.

The IIP and the BOP have the same principles and detailing levels. IIP shows the positions of assets and liabilities abroad each quarter. The positions together with the transactions, revaluations and other volume changes give a consistent picture of the financial part of the external sector.

Full integration with the National Accounts makes the Norwegian BOP and IIP data consistent with both the exports and the imports figures and financial figures for the Rest of the World Account of the National Accounts.

The BOP has a somewhat broader scope compared to the External Trade in Goods statistics. The main deviations are that BOP includes as exports goods delivered to non-resident carriers in Norwegian ports, goods other than oil and gas exported directly from the Norwegian continental shelf, imports of fuel to Norwegian carriers in foreign ports, and direct imports of goods to the Norwegian continental shelf. In addition, the BOP converts exports and imports of certain types of goods as registered in the external trade statistics into exports and imports of services.

A table of the external debt statistics can be found under “tables”. The external debt statistics is based on the guidelines in BPM6 and External Debt Statistics: Guide for Compilers and Users. The quarterly data from the IIP statistics is the basis of the external debt statistics. The gross external debt liabilities equals the debt liabilities in the IIP statement, i.e., total IIP liabilities excluding all equity (equity shares and other equity) and investment fund shares. The first level of disaggregation of the external debt is by institutional sector. The second level of disaggregation is by maturity of external debt, and the third level of disaggregation is by type of debt instrument.

In the BOP and IIP Statistics there is a classification on functional categories, one of them being direct investment. There is a separate annual statistics on Direct investment published by Statistics Norway. The two statistics follows different principles and will therefore show different figures. Statistics Norway also publishes Portfolio investment abroad, and the statistics follows the same international guidelines as the IIP.

The main part of the data is collected under the provisions of the Statistics Act and the Act on the Supervision of Credit Institutions, Insurance Companies and Securities Trading etc.

EU-regulations incorporated in the EEA-agreement define the scope of the statistics. The following regulations apply to the BOP and IIP -statistics:

  • REGULATION (EC) No 184/2005 OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL of 12 January 2005 on Community statistics concerning balance of payments, international trade in services and foreign direct investment
  • COMMISSION REGULATION (EC) No 1055/2008 of 27 October 2008 implementing Regulation (EC) No 184/2005 of the European Parliament and of the Council, as regards quality criteria and quality reporting for balance of payments statistics
  • COMMISSION REGULATION (EU) No 1227/2010 of 20 December 2010 amending Regulation (EC) No 1055/2008 implementing Regulation (EC) No 184/2005 of the European Parliament and of the Council, as regards quality criteria and quality reporting for balance of payments statistics
  • COMMISSION REGULATION (EU) No 555/2012 of 22 June 2012 amending Regulation (EC) No 184/2005 of the European Parliament and of the Council on Community statistics concerning balance of payments, international trade in services and foreign direct investment, as regards the update of data requirements and definitions
  • REGULATION (EC) No 716/2007 OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL of 20 June 2007 on Community statistics on the structure and activity of foreign affiliates

The scope of the Balance of Payments and International investment position is defined in international guidelines in the Balance of Payments and International Investment Position Manual (BPM6), System of National Accounts (2008 SNA, published by the UN, OECD, IMF, World Bank and the European Commission) and the European System of National and Regional Accounts (ESA 2010).

Like the National Accounts, the IIP and BOP accounts are constructed around three basic concepts: statistical units, economic values and transactions. Briefly, the accounting systems describe transactions between statistical units in which economic values are provided or received in exchange for other economic values. The Balance of Payments shall in principle include all transactions between unit’s resident of the Norwegian economic territory and non-resident units. See below for more about the sample that’s behind the BoP statistics.

The delineation of the economy towards the rest of the world is based on the concept of resident units. A unit is a resident unit when it has a centre of economic interest in the economic territory in question, i.e. when it is engaged in economic activity in a territory for a long period of time (at least one year).

The Norwegian economic territory includes mainland Norway together with the Norwegian part of the Continental Shelf, Svalbard and Jan Mayen with Bjørnøya.


The BOP and IIP statistics are based on data collected by other divisions in Statistics Norway.

The main sources for the current- and capital account;

  • External trade in goods
  • Petroleum Statistics
  • Sample survey, non-financial enterprises,non-financial corporations and financial institutions not under supervision
  • Structural Business Statistics, Ocean Transport
  • Annual accounting statistics for the general government.
  • Quarterly accounting statistics for financial corporations under supervision
  • Travel survey

The main sources for the financial account;

  • Quarterly accounting statistics for financial corporations under supervision. Positions are reported and some transactions (equity, other debt securities and loans) and some revaluations (exchange rate changes and other price changes) quarterly and annually.
  • Quarterly accounting statistics for non-financial corporations and financial institutions not under supervision. Positions and revaluations are reported quarterly and annually.
  • Annual accounting statistics for the general government. Positions and revaluations (exchange rate changes and other price changes) are reported.
  • Quarterly data from the Norwegian Central Securities Depository (VPS) and data from a separate survey on mutual funds. Positions and transactions are reported.

Data collected for non-financial corporations and mutual funds are based on sample surveys. See each survey for more information on sampling, for example sample survey and how to choose the sample. For areas with incomplete statistical coverage, it is necessary to do estimations or use supplementary sources such as tax returns.

All major Norwegian financial and non-financial enterprises are covered in the BOP and IIP-statistics.

For most of the BOP and IIP items the figures used are as shown in the primary sources, as mentioned in the “Data source and sampling” section. Others are derived through estimations of which the most important are:

Current account

Services and income flows are estimated on quarterly basis by using the change as observed in the sampling survey data combined with last known annual totals. This estimation procedure is the same used in Quarterly National Accounts.

Reinvestment of earnings

Reinvestment of earnings is included in both the current and financial account. Reinvestment of earnings arising from a direct investor’s equity in its direct investment enterprise is calculated based on accounting variables profit and dividends.

Financial account

Financial transactions are to a large extent estimated starting with observed investment positions. The definitional identity employed is: opening position + transactions + revaluations = closing position.

Most of the revaluations due to exchange rate movements are estimated combining exchange rates and information on foreign currencies in use for different variables.

The household’s holiday houses abroad are estimated based on tax information. Price changes and exchange rates are estimated from information from various countries.

The non-financial enterprises and financial institutions not under supervision are based on a quarterly sample survey. This covers the major enterprises in the population and has a sample size of 500-600 enterprises. Quarterly numbers are then grossed up with figures from the annual BoP and IIP reporting that has a sample size of 3,000 enterprises. This is done by adding the enterprises only included in yearly survey to the fourth quarter and are then copied the following three quarters. These enterprises represent approximately ten percent of non-financial enterprises' total assets and liabilities.

Not relevant

Statistics Norway's standard rules for confidentiality are applied

Statistics Norway has adapted the international recommendations for compiling BOP and IIP statistics and is therefore comparable with other countries' BOP and IIP statistics. Annual and quarterly current account data on a consistent form are available back to 1981 in the Statbank. Correspondingly for the financial account back to 2005. Quarterly IIP data on a consistent form are available back to 2012 in the Statbank. The data has had several changes due to the new manuals BPM6 and ESA2010 and which has led to minor breaks in the time series. Longer times series for annual IIP data are available back to 1998 based on BPM5 guidelines. Longer times series for annual and quarterly current account data are available back to 1970. Correspondingly for the financial account back to 1981. For the period 1994 - 2004 monthly data for both current and financial account are available. An historic table for Balance of Payments is available back to 1949, see 22.8 and 22.9.

The Norwegian BOP and IIP Statistics makes use of information from a great variety of statistical sources and will reflect uncertainty and errors which might appear in these sources. However, the fact that IIP is a logical system within an even larger logical system of the National Accounts, it is possible to carry out a range of consistency checks to counterbalance the initial collection and then processing errors of the primary sources.

Preliminary quarterly and annual figures are revised until final annual figures are published (in August/September year t+2). See Administrative information, Frequency and Timeliness.

In addition, periodical main revisions give revised figures. A main revision of the BoP time series were conducted in December 2014 with the implementation of the new manuals Balance of Payments and International Investment Position (BPM6) and European system of national Accounts (ESA2010). The BoP financial account has revised its time series back to 2005.

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