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Norway: How to comply with SAF-T in SAP ERP & S/4HANA

Norway has introduced SAF-T reporting for corporate entities with a volume of business exceeding NOK 5 million gross, or annual transactions above 600 per annum. If requested by the Tax Authority (Skatteetaten) and for accounting periods from the 1st of January 2020 onwards, these companies require to provide SAF-T Norway files in XML format. Please note that this was, at least initially, NOT a mandatory reporting, but instead a technical requirement on the format in which to deliver the accounting data if the Tax Authority asks for it. Since 2022 it has become mandatory.

In Norway, the SAF-T reporting for financial data is known as SAF-T Regnskap. You use the SAF-T for Norway solution to extract data and create SAF-T (Standard Audit File – Taxation) files, compliant with Skatteetaten (Norwegian Tax Administration) regulations. That is, to transform accounting data from your business into a predefined exchange format and prepare it for transfer to external systems, electronically, such as to the systems of legal or tax authorities. The generation of the XML and the actual communication with the tax authorities, that is, the sending of the SAF-T file, are separate steps, with the latter being dependent on further information from the Skatteetaten and access to Altinn, the official Norwegian tax authority’s web portal.

The SAF-T solution encompasses the extraction of data and the generation of the SAF-T file. Additionally, you may delete extracted data or access a monitoring tool that gives you an overview of all SAF-T operations which have been carried out. These steps are further described in this blog.

What is SAF-T?

Before we have a look at the Norway-specific solution, let´s have a small look at SAF-T itself.

SAF-T is an electronic exchange XML standard to report business transactional data between companies and external parties such as tax administrations, auditing systems, and others. The standard describes an electronic file format, which defines accounting data to be reported, and its data structure, so that it may be submitted to a Tax Administration or external parties for review.

What does the process for SAF-T Norway look like?

The SAF-T for Norway process consists of two main steps: Data extraction and file generation, with the resulting file being submitted through external electronic means to the Altinn web portal, as required by the Norwegian tax authorities. The SAF-T solution also includes additional report functionality for the deletion of extracted data and monitoring.

In more detail, the whole process looks as follows:

1. Extracting SAF-T Data

The first step in the SAF-T process is to extract data from your financial system. Data can be extracted for a specific company and a given period. This data extraction allows the SAF-T solution to later generate the SAF-T-compliant XML file. The data extraction reads the company’s data and writes the selected data to so-called “extraction tables” which store data to later generate the SAF-T file.

2. Deleting Extracted Data

If needed, you can delete previously extracted data from the system and remove their corresponding entries from the extraction tables. This allows you to re-extract data that was incorrectly extracted or simply re-extract data to remove gaps from your extraction periods.

3. Generating the SAF-T File

When generating the SAF-T file, the system uses previously extracted data to create a SAF-T-compliant XML file, ready for submission to the Skatteetaten.

4. Monitoring SAF-T Operations

When using the monitoring report for SAF-T, you can obtain detailed information on various SAF-T operations carried out for a given period, country, and company code. This includes information on extractions, and file generation, as well as information on ledger types, extraction modules, XML schema versions, run time, and access to execution logs for each operation.

5. Downloading the SAF-T File

After you have created your SAF-T file using the Generate SAF-T File report, you can download the SAF-T file to your file system.

6. Validating and Submitting SAF-T Files for Norway

The Skatteetaten requires that the generated files are submitted and validated on their official web portal, Altinn. This portal requires its registration and enrollment process (you can refer to the Skatteetaten guidelines for submission of SAF-T files on the Altinn website).

How can PIKON help?

There are 2 options available in SAP on Premise for both SAP S/4HANA and SAP ERP:

To start with the solution different steps need to be considered. 

We first need to look at the latest support package, which is available on your system, and see which OSS Notes need to be implemented. Please note that the SAP Notes must be implemented in a precise sequence for the solution to operate correctly. The solution may require extensive SAP Note installation. To avoid unnecessary effort, please consider the latest SP implementation.

After this, we can start configuring the solution with several customizing steps and the completion of relevant mapping tables. After this, we can generate the needed XML file´s directly from your system.

At PIKON, we have set up a Competence Center for Legal Requirements. Here our consultants investigate legal requirements worldwide and their impact on the SAP system. Our team consists of experts that combine in-depth knowledge and the gathered experience. 

We are a strategic partner who offers clients the best suitable solution to ensure that their SAP system and business processes meet different country-specific legal requirements in the long run. Furthermore, we follow up regularly on new and changing legal requirements relevant to our clients and inform them when action is needed. That way, clients can concentrate on their daily business without worrying about non-compliance with necessary regulations.

Contact us!

Do you have any questions about how to comply with SAF-T in Norway? Reach out! 

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About the author
Christophe Op't Eynde
Christophe Op 't Eynde
Christophe Op 't Eynde was an SAP ERP Consultant at PIKON Benelux with a strong focus on Finance and Controlling processes.

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