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State Aid

State Aid: Norway made changes in the financing of public hospital pharmacies



Following a proposal by the EFTA Surveillance Authority, Norwegian authorities have implemented measures to ensure that the financing of publicly owned hospital pharmacies complies with the state aid rules of the EEA Agreement. Therefore, the Authority decided today to close the case.

The main purpose of the hospital pharmacies is to provide pharmaceuticals and services to public hospitals. However, they also offer pharmaceutical products and non-pharmaceutical products “over the counter” to the general public, in competition with private pharmacies.

To ensure compliance with the state aid rules, the Authority proposed several measures in November 2013 (see press release). Norway accepted the proposal, and as of January 2015 the following changes are in place:

  • A tax duty on the income from retail activities;

  • New procedures ensuring that no cross-subsidisation takes place between the commercial and non-commercial activities;

  • A requirement that the retail activities achieve profits comparable to what a private investor would expect from a similar undertaking. 

In its decision today, the Authority recorded the measures taken by the Norwegian authorities and decided to close the case.

A non-confidential version of the decision will be published in the register of state aid decisions on the Authority's website, normally within a month.

For further information, please contact:

Mr. Andreas Kjeldsberg Pihl
Press & Information Officer
tel. (+32)(0)2 286 18 66
mob. (+32)(0)492 900 187


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