EFTA and Singapore discuss updating of free trade agreement

Published 13-06-2013
The Joint Committee under the EFTA-Singapore Free Trade Agreement (FTA) held its fourth meeting on 12 June 2013 in Geneva.

After ten years in operation, delegations from the EFTA States and Singapore discussed possibilities for updating and extending the broad-based FTA in several areas, including market access for industrial and agricultural products, rules of origin, trade facilitation, trade in services, investment and sustainable development.

The Joint Committee was preceded by meetings of trade in services experts, as well as of the Subcommittee on Customs and Origin Matters. In the Committee, Ambassador Martin Eyjólfsson from Iceland acted as EFTA’s spokesperson, whilst the Singaporean side was chaired by Deputy Director Tan Lay Lin from the Ministry of Trade and Industry.

With total bilateral merchandise trade amounting to USD 6.6 billion, Singapore was EFTA’s sixth largest trading partner (counting the European Union as one) in 2012. With an average growth rate of more than 14%, merchandise trade between Singapore and EFTA has more than tripled since the entry into force of the FTA in 2003.