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Norway Is Building a Tax-Free Private City, Here's Why

The area where Liberstad will be built
The area where Liberstad will be built | © Liberstad
According to Benjamin Franklin, “in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” But what if you could at least avoid the latter? Liberstad, a private city currently in development in Vest-Agder county near Kristiansand, promises tax-free living among like-minded individuals who believe in the potential of cryptocurrencies. If this sounds intriguing, read on.

The concept

Imagine all the people creating private cities, to live and work together in a de-centralized world… not a lyric from a certain Beatles’ song, but the premise behind the Libertania Project. According to their manifesto, “by creating new private cities for people to live without a local government, people can have more freedom and live in a society based on voluntary cooperation and without all the regulations.” Liberstad, established in 2017 in Norway’s Vest-Agder county, is one such private city.

The idea is that in a private city you can start a business without needing a permit from the government, and use alternative/local currencies – something that also saves you from having to pay taxes. Also, by bringing a lot of people together to buy land and collaborate, in Liberstad you will be able to buy a house or land for prices well below what which you would pay in the rest of Norway. The people behind the project, “a small group of individuals who are seeking a change in the way society works,” claim that their principles are based on anarchism and non-aggression. That being said, Liberstad is still on Norwegian soil so you’re expected to follow Norwegian laws and regulations – both in terms of conducting your business, but also in terms of immigration.

The area

150 hectares of farmland in Tjelland, in Marnardal Municipality, serves as the base for what will soon be Liberstad. The location is extremely scenic, with lush vegetation, lakes, small islets and waterways – all only a 45-minute drive from Kristiansand. The nearest village is Bjelland (where you’ll find a convenience store, a school, a sports park and various outdoor facilities) and the closest train station is in Marnardal, with daily service to and from Stavanger-Oslo.

The Tjelland farm area © Liberstad

What will the city look like

Life in Liberstad is expected to be “easier, more relaxing and without high cost of living” – with people having greater freedom and opportunities than in a conventional city. As 100 per cent private, Liberstad will be exclusively responsible for everything from selling plots of land (as well as drafting and rezoning them) to building roads and the marketplace, to managing security and safety. The city is going to be divided in four districts: a central district with shops, restaurants, commercial premises and parks; a housing district (the largest zone); a tourist and concert district with camping area plus concert space; and a district of untouched nature for hiking trails and recreation.

Currently 120 people from 33 countries from all over the world have bought plots of land in Liberstad. There is a 500-people waiting list to buy land, and a new round of land pre-selling for an additional 50,000 sqm is soon to begin. It’s going to take a while to finalize land ownership and then start building (they’re currently looking at different architectural approaches on what the space could look like), but if you want to make your new home in Liberstad, you can buy land here. If you think the Liberstad project is cool and want to make a contribution, you can take a look at the cryptocurrencies they accept donations in.

An example of how the buildings could look like © Liberstad