EFTA and Canada to explore expansion of free trade agreement

Published 11-05-2012
Delegations from the EFTA States and Canada convened on 9 May 2012 in Ottawa for the 2nd Joint Committee meeting under the free trade agreement (FTA) between the two sides.

The Joint Committee noted that the FTA has served economic operators in the EFTA States and Canada well since the entry into force in July 2009. At the same time, the Committee agreed to start exploring the possibility  of extending the FTA to areas beyond trade in goods, such as trade in services, investment, government procurement as well as sustainable development, thereby taking into account their latest agreements with third parties.

With total bilateral merchandise trade of USD 10 billion in 2011, Canada is EFTA’s 6th largest trading partner, counting the EU as one. Bilateral trade in services and direct investment are also substantial.

In the Joint Committee, the EFTA delegation was headed by Ambassador Kristinn F. Árnason from Iceland, while Mr Bruce Christie, Minister at Canada’s Permanent Mission in Geneva, led the Canadian delegation.  

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