Nkom consulting on plans to change telephone numbering system

16 Oct 2019

Norway’s National Communications Authority (Nasjonal kommunikasjonsmyndighet, Nkom) has begun consulting on proposed changes which would see the abolition of geographic telephone numbers in the country. In a press release regarding the matter, the regulator said it was suggesting that a common number series be used for fixed voice lines, noting that existing numbers would not be affected.

According to the Nkom, the proposals are in part a response to upcoming changes to municipal and regional structures in Norway and, if confirmed, the revised numbering plan would come into force from 1 January 2020, at which date several county and municipal mergers are scheduled to come into force. Meanwhile, the watchdog also noted that since 2007 Norwegian fixed line subscribers have been able to take their landline with them when moving, even if to an entirely different region, arguing that this current system has therefore already served to dilute the geographic affiliation of telephone numbers.

With the Nkom having reportedly looked at various possibilities for changes to the country’s numbering plans with local telecoms operators, it said several suggestions had been for the existing geographical number series to be combined into a common number series for fixed telephone services. Now, the regulator is seeking feedback on these plans – specifically from telecoms service providers, emergency service agencies and consumer authorities – by a deadline of 22 November 2019.