EFTA and Albania finalise free trade negotiations

Published 29-06-2009
The four EFTA States (Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Switzerland) and Albania initialed the texts for a Free Trade Agreement on 26 June 2009 in Geneva, after just two rounds of negotiations.

The EFTA-Albania Free Trade Agreement follows the approach adopted by EFTA with other partner countries in the Balkans and the Mediterranean region. The Agreement focuses on the liberalization of trade in industrial and agricultural products, including fish, as well as on provisions on intellectual property rights.

Two-way merchandise trade between EFTA and Albania reached 42 million USD in 2008. The new Agreement is expected to be signed before the end of 2009, after a joint legal review.

In the negotiations, the EFTA team was led by Mr Hanspeter Tschäni, Minister, from the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs, while Ms Pranvera Kastrati, Director for Trade Policy from the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Energy, headed the Albanian delegation.