Transport infrastructure

A summary of Norway's PEPPOL-based e-procurement infrastructure.

Published: 03. Jun 2014, Last modified: 04. Mar 2019

Norway uses an implementation of the PEPPOL architecture, components and services for connecting buyers and sellers.

Components of the infrastructure

The PEPPOL-based transport infrastructure has four main elements:

  • participants: buyers and sellers who have information to exchange
  • access points (APs): commercial ICT vendors or non-profit entities that provide users with connectivity to the network
  • Difi’s ELMA: a Norwegian-based user registry
  • OpenPEPPOL’s service metadata locator (SML), an EU-wide central register and universal locator

Using this infrastructure, participants can exchange a wide range of data and documents in pre-specified formats, including but not limited to:

  • catalogue
  • purchase orders
  • order confirmations
  • dispatch advice
  • invoices
  • credit notes
  • reminders

Difi’s role in the PEPPOL infrastructure

Difi, the Norwegian Agency for Public Management and e-Government, is the PEPPOL Authority in Norway. We authorise Norwegian-registered access points and operate the ELMA registry containing the identities and data reception capabilities of all public and private sector entities that communicate using this transport infrastructure.

Buyers and sellers

Each participant only needs a single connection to a PEPPOL-enabled access point, either in Norway or elsewhere in the EU:

To be eligible for connection to a Norwegian-based access point, users (buyers and sellers) must:

  • be Norwegian-registered legal entities, verified in Norway’s central business registry: the Brønnøysund Register Centre
  • have access to enterprise systems capable of producing documents in PEPPOL BIS compliant formats

PEPPOL-enabled access points are also available in other EU countries, each with their own specific requirements.

Access points

Access points (APs) operate as a mesh of connections to each other. They are the interface between individual participants and the e-procurement network, providing up-and downlinks for participants to distribute standardized documents, such as invoices and credit notes, which enable procurement transactions. Access points can be operated on a commercial or non-profit basis.

Access points must have five interfaces:

  • to an SML (service metadata locator) e.g. OpenPEPPOL
  • to an SMP (service metadata provider) e.g. Difi’s ELMA database
  • to senders of documents
  • to addressees of documents
  • to other access points (some receivers may operate their own registered PEPPOL access point)


Difi’s ELMA registry, a national service metadata publisher (SMP), is used by the access points to verify the identity of individual participants, find the location of the access point where they can be reached, and to confirm their functional capabilities: the types of documents or data that the participant can send or receive via the PEPPOL infrastructure.


OpenPEPPOL’s service metadata locator (SML) is a universal pointer to the SMP that holds information on participants. OpenPEPPOL maintains the pan-European SML (service metadata locator) for the PEPPOL system, and is the registration authority for European-based access points.

Electronic payment

Electronic payment capability is central to the e-procurement infrastructure in Norway. Banking processes in Norway are fully digititalized and Norway is a part of the Single European Payments Area (SEPA).

Learn more about electronic payments.



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