As from 1 July 2012 B2G e-invoicing becomes compulsory in Norway. The format is EHF: Elektronisk HandelsFormat. This format is a subset of subset of UBL2.0. The Norwegian Agency for Public Management and e-Government (Difi) is responsible for the roll out of the e-invoicing in Norway.
Compulsory, but to whom?
It is unclear to whom B2G e-invoicing will become compulsory. Hans Christian Holte, the director general of DIFI says that all suppliers, SME’s and one-(wo)man firms, must send their invoices electronically to the Norwegian public sector.
Norwegian software providers Compello takes a different approach. It states that as from 1 July 2012 all State-owned enterprises are obliged to accept the invoice and credit note in EHF and that all suppliers who deal with the state have a right to send e-invoices.
The world upside down
Hans Christian Holte of DIFI concludes that they can’t expect that SME’s and one-(wo)man-firms- have their own proprietary e-procurement solutions installed. He thinks that a “massive adoption scenario” will be difficult to meet unless the private sector can offer several web-based e-invoicing services.
Wait, wait just a second. The Norwegian government wants to make B2G e-invoicing in EHF compulsory because they benefit from (processing) this type of e-invoicing, right? And now the private sector has to come to the rescue, with web-based solutions to get the SME’s to adopt EHF e-invoicing?
This was how the private sector reacted: “Today there are over fifty suppliers offering web-invoicing in Norway, but only one supplier is ready to produce electronic invoices on EHF format.”
Because of this situation DIFI’s director general, Hans Christian Holte, invites suppliers to a dialogue meeting about web-based e-invoicing services for the public sector. This meeting will be held this September.
DIFI strives for a situation with fair competition where as many suppliers as possible offers electronic invoicing in the EHF format implementing PEPPOL BIS. With a broad choice of web-based e-invoicing solutions available to the SME’s a free flow of invoices from SME’s can be assured.
The question is, do these software suppliers get an incentive/ compensation to get going?
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