Statoil opened office in the Netherlands after Norwegian tax reform

Statoil logoStatoil logo.Photo: Norway today Media

Following new tax rules in Norway in 2012, much of the international operation of Statoil was driven from the Netherlands. The purpose was to avoid double taxation.


International operations in countries such as Brazil, Canada, Venezuela, the United Arab Emirates, India and Turkey are managed from an office of 15 employees in Rotterdam, which also manages 39 different holding companies for Statoil, reported Dagens Næringsliv newspaper.

Even though Statoil has minimal activity in the Netherlands, the company has over the past four years wiped several billion kroner off its tax bill through the Rotterdam office to countries across the globe, the newspaper writes.

A Norwegian tax reform from 2012 meant that Statoil could no longer deduct costs of foreign operations against the Norwegian taxes paid by the company.

Statoil, which owns 67% of the state, therefore chose to set up its own office in the Netherlands to avoid paying double tax.

‘Overall, I’d say that we avoid double taxation on top of the tax burden we already have. We want to avoid taxing the same income several times over, after we’ve already been taxed a high percentage in the country where the income was created,’ said Finn Lexow, the tax director at Statoil.

‘Norway loses nothing on this. But we avoid double taxation on our way home’, said Lexow.

The Ministry of Finance doesn’t want to comment on Statoil’s commercial assessments, but Secretary of State, Jørgen Næsje of Fremskrittspartiet (Frp), rejected that Statoil had to pay tax on foreign income that had already been taxed.

© NTB Scanpix / Norway Today