Parliamentary Committee

The EFTA Parliamentary Committee is a forum for parliamentarians from the four Member States: Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland. It provides the Association with a valuable link to political life in each EFTA country and, through its cooperation with parliamentarians in the European Union, serves as a link between political life in EFTA and the EU.

EFTA Parliamentary Committee work schedule for 2017

 

History and structure

Informal exchanges of views between parliamentarians from the different EFTA countries started in 1963. These meetings were formalised in 1977, when the Committee of Members of Parliament of the EFTA Countries (CMP) was founded.

Since 1981, the Committee has held regular meetings with Members of the European Parliament. These relations were institutionalised through the formation of the EEA Joint Parliamentary Committee (EEA JPC) when the EEA Agreement entered into force in 1994.

This means that since the entry into force of the EEA Agreement, there have in fact been two EFTA Parliamentary Committees: the CMP, which comprises all four Member States and deals with matters related to third countries outside the EU, and the Committee of Members of Parliament of the EFTA States (MPS), which deals with EEA-related matters and forms the EFTA side of the EEA JPC. Switzerland has observer status in the MPS.

CMP Rules of Procedure

MPS Rules of Procedure

 

Activities

The EFTA Parliamentary Committee usually holds six meetings a year. It focuses on the functioning of the EEA, political developments in the EU and their impact on the EEA, and developments in EFTA’s free trade agreements (FTAs) and current trade negotiations. In addition to these regular meetings, each year a delegation from the Committee visits one or more third countries where EFTA is currently negotiating or updating an FTA. The aim of these visits is to support the work of the EFTA’s national governments and to add a parliamentary dimension to these negotiation processes.

The EFTA Parliamentary Committee also follows other aspects of free trade, such as WTO multilateral framework negotiations and human rights aspects and environmental policies in FTAs. In 2008, the Committee obtained observer status in the Parliamentary Conference on the WTO, organised by the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) and the European Parliament.

The EFTA Parliamentary Committee also meets twice a year with the EFTA Consultative Committee, ensuring an exchange of views between parliamentarians and social partners in the Member States on topical issues related to EFTA’s work.

Reports and Resolutions adopted by the EFTA Parliamentary Committee. 

 

Relations with the European Parliament

The EEA Joint Parliamentary Committee (EEA JPC) is composed of Members of the European Parliament and parliamentarians from the EEA EFTA States. Its task is to contribute to a better understanding between the EU and the EEA EFTA States in the fields covered by the EEA Agreement. The focus of the EEA JPC is to scrutinise developments in the EU and their potential impact on the EEA Agreement, and its members have the right to put oral and written questions to the representatives of the EEA Council and the EEA Joint Committee. The EEA JPC meets twice a year, once in one of the three EEA EFTA States and once at the European Parliament.

As a consultative body, the EEA JPC expresses its views on any matter of relevance to the EEA through resolution texts. It also addresses topical issues with European Commissioners and Commission representatives, with the aim of raising the profile of matters in which the EEA EFTA States have a high interest.

Reports and Resolutions adopted by the EEA Joint Parliamentary Committee

 

Members of the EFTA Parliamentary Committee (January 2017)

 

 

Icelandic delegation

 

Ms Hanna Katrín Friðriksson, Reform Party

Mr Smári McCarthy, Pirate Party

Mr Vilhjálmur Bjarnason, Independence Party

Ms Svandís Svavarsdóttir, Left-Green Movement

Mr Páll Magnússon, Independence Party

 

Alternate members

 

Mr Jón Steindór Valdimarsson, Reform Party

Ms Ásta Guðrún Helgadóttir, Pirate Party

Ms Áslaug Arna Sigurbjörnsdóttir, Independence Party

Mr Andrés Ingi Jónsson, Left-Green Movement

Mr Óli Björn Kárason, Independence Party

 

Liechtenstein delegation

 

Mr Elfried Hasler, Progressive Citizens' Party (MPS Vice-Chair)

Mr Harry Quaderer, Independent

 

Alternate members

 

Mr Manfred Kaufmann, Patriotic Union

Mr Eugen Nägele, Progressive Citizens' Party

 

Norwegian delegation

 

Mr Svein Roald Hansen, Labour Party (CMP/MPS Chair)

Ms Heidi Nordby Lunde, Conservative Party

Ms Marianne Marthinsen, Labour Party

Ms Ingunn Foss, Conservative Party

Mr Morten Ørsal Johansen, Progress Party

Mr Sigbjørn Gjelsvik, Centre Party

Alternate members

Mr Espen Barth Eide, Labour Party

Mr Fredric Holen Bjørdal, Labour Party

Ms Cecilie Myrseth, Labour Party

Mr Nikolai Astrup, Conservative Party

Ms Margunn Ebbesen, Conservative Party

Mr Terje Halleland, Progress Party

Mr Per Olaf Lundteigen, Centre Party

Mr Freddy André Øvstegård, Socialist Left Party

Mr Carl-Erik Grimstad, Liberal Party

Mr Steinar Reiten, Christian Democratic Party

 

Swiss delegation (observers in the MPS)

 

Mr Thomas Aeschi, Swiss People's Party (CMP Vice-Chair)

Ms Karin Keller-Sutter, FDP. The Liberals

Ms Kathy Riklin, Christian Democratic Party

Mr Hannes Germann, Swiss People's Party

Mr Eric Nussbaumer, Social Democratic Party

 

Alternate members

 

Mr Didier Berberat, Social Democratic Party

Mr Jean-François Rime, Swiss People's Party

Mr Hans Peter Portmann, FDP. The Liberals

Mr Hans Egloff, Swiss People's Party

Mr Konrad Graber, Christian Democratic Party

 

 

Senior Officer
EEA Coordination Division

+32 22861 771