Norwegian Government Ministries 1905 - 1940

Published under: Stoltenberg's 2nd Government

Publisher regjeringen.no

As Norway's first foreign minister, Prime Minister Jørgen Løvland came from the post as Prime Minister Christian Michelsen’s deputy. Due to this, it was in 1905 established that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs be mentioned first in the list of ministries. Apart from this, the ranking of ministries from the years 1814-1905 was kept, with new ministries listed according to age.

By royal decree of 24 April 1906, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs had its organisation established. At the same time the Government’s work was organised as follows:

Prime Minister and his Secretary
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Ministry of Church and Education
Ministry of Justice and the Police
Ministry of Finance and Customs
Ministry of Defence
Ministry of Auditing
Ministry of Trade, Shipping and Industry
Ministry of Public Labour
Ministry of Agriculture
State Secretariat

1913
By royal decree of 3 June 1913, it was decided that the Ministry of Trade, Shipping and Industry from 1 July should be named the Ministry of Social Affairs, Trade, Shipping and Fisheries (short: the Ministry of Social Affairs). At the same time the ministry’s department of shipping was transferred to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The Ministry of Social Affairs had civil medicine, emigration control and various legal matters transferred from the Ministry of Justice. From the Ministry of Finance i.a. the Housing Bank and health and life insurance companies were transferred. From the Ministry of Church and Education were transferred matters concerning sexual offence and temperance, and from the Ministry of Agriculture various employment matters.

1916
By royal decree of 26 August 1916 a temporary ministry of provisioning was established from the same date. It had matters concerning provisioning and rationing transferred from the Ministry of Agriculture.

By royal decree of 8 September 1916, a ministry of trade, shipping, industry, craft and fisheries was established from 1 October that year – the Ministry of Trade and Shipping. At the same time the Ministry of Social Affairs, Trade, Industry and Fisheries had its name changed to the Ministry of Social Affairs.

In this process i.a. the following matters were transferred from the Ministry of Social Affairs to the Ministry of Trade: domestic trade, markets, stock and produce exchanges, craft, weight and measurement, industrial affairs, sea fisheries, mining and various other matters concerning state property.

From the Ministry of Justice were transferred various auditing matters, from the Ministry of Finance were transferred the Kongsberg Silver Works and the Royal Mint, and from the Ministry of Labour i.a. postal administration, government-assisted shipping and telegraph and telephone administration.

At the same time matters concerning poor and vagrant relief were transferred to the Ministry of Church and Education, while fire legislation and the Finnmark spirits taxation funds were transferred from the Ministry of Justice.

1917
By royal decree of 20 April 1917, the pension fund and the widows fund were transferred from the Ministry of Finance to the Ministry of Social Affairs.

By royal decree of 28 April 1917, a temporary ministry of industrial supplies was established from 30 April that year – the Ministry of Industrial Supplies.

1918
By Storting resolution of 30 January 1918, the Ministry of Auditing was abolished as of 1 July that year, public auditing being transferred to the new State Office of the Auditor General.

1919
By royal decree of 25 April 1919, matters concerning fishery provisioning were transferred from the Ministry of Provisioning to the Ministry of Trade. At the same time i.a. the State Whaling Office was transferred to the Ministry of Industrial Supplies. This temporary arrangement was made permanent from 10 October 1919.

1920
By royal decree of 9 April 1920, the Ministry of Industrial Supplies was abolished from 30 April that year. War matters were transferred to the Ministry of Defence, matters concerning industrial supplies and export ban to the Ministry of Finance, engineer, statistics and personnel matters to the Ministry of Trade, and the State Fuel Board to the Ministry of Provisioning.

By royal decree of 26 November 1920, aviation matters – except postal services, were transferred to the Ministry of Defence.

By royal decree of 1 September 1920, the harbour authorities were from 15 September that year transferred from the Ministry of Labour to the Ministry of Trade.

1922
By royal decree of 20 October 1922 the Ministry of Provisioning was abolished as of 31 October 1922. Matters concerning price regulations were transferred to the Ministry of Social Affairs; other matters to the Ministry of Agriculture.

1939
By royal decrees of 14 and 22 September 1939, a temporary ministry of provisioning was established as of 1 October 1939. Matters concerning provision boards were transferred from the Ministry of Agriculture, matters concerning emergency legislation from the Ministry of Trade. Also, the Ministry of Provisioning was granted authority to exempt from various import and export bans.

1940
On 1 January 1940 the ministries were as follows:

Office of the Prime Minister
Secretariat of coordination.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Department of administrative and legal affairs, department of political affairs and international law, department of trade affairs.

Ministry of Church and Education
Department of church affairs, department of education, department of cultural affairs.

Ministry of Justice and the Police
Department of administrative affairs, Prison Board, department of legal affairs, department of municipal affairs.

Ministry of Finance and Customs
Department of administrative affairs, department of finance, department of taxation, department of customs, Directorate of Wages, Government Printing Office, Government Cashier, Ship Control Office.

Ministry of Defence
Army board, navy board, air force office (also covering Aviation Board).

Ministry of Social Affairs
Department of general affairs, department of medical affairs, department of social security.

Ministry of Public Labour
Department of general affairs, department of waterfalls and electricity.

Ministry of Agriculture
Office of agricultural affairs, office of cultivation, office of home economics, office of forestry, licence office, office of veterinary affairs, office of reindeer keeping and fresh-water fishing, severance office.

Ministry of Trade, Shipping, Industry, Craft and Fisheries
Department of general affairs, department of fisheries, department of communications (office of steam shipping, mail board, telegraph board).

Ministry of Provisioning
Department of general affairs, Directorate of Industrial Provisions, Directorate of Provisioning and Rationing, Directorate of Shipping, Directorate of Foreign Trade.

Secretariat to the Council of State