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Internal Market: Norwegian building authorisation requirement in breach of EEA rules

16.5.2012

PR(12)26

The Norwegian Building and Planning Act's requirements on local authorisation are in breach of the Services Directive. Accordingly, The EFTA Surveillance Authority today requested Norway to notify necessary changes to its legislation within two months.

In order to perform certain construction works in Norway, an undertaking needs to apply for local authorisation. This application needs to be repeated for every single project. An undertaking can apply for central approval, but is still required to obtain a local authorisation in addition.

The Authority considers this local authorisation requirement to be an administrative barrier to the provision of cross-border services. It is not in line with the obligations Norway has undertaken in the implementation of the Services Directive. The aim of the Directive is the better functioning of the services sector of the Internal Market.

Norway is in its right to establish control mechanisms in the field of building activities. However, the current legislation is too burdensome to be in compliance with EEA law. In particular, it does not take into account that foreign service providers are already subject to control measures in the Member State where they are established.

For these reasons the Authority considers that Norway has failed to comply with EEA rules on the Services Directive. Its request to Norway takes the form of a reasoned opinion, the second stage of the EEA infringement proceedings. If Norway does not take the measures necessary to ensure compliance with EEA rules within two months, the Authority may refer the matter to the EFTA Court.

For further information, please contact:

Mr. Trygve Mellvang-Berg
Press & Information Officer
tel. (+32)(0)2 286 18 66
mob. (+32)(0)492 900 187

 




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