Turkey

Relation: 

The Free Trade Agreement between the EFTA States and Turkey was signed in Geneva, Switzerland, on 10 December 1991. The Agreement entered into force on 1 April 1992.
A modernised and expanded Free Trade Agreement was signed in Sauðárkrókur, Iceland, on 25 June 2018. The new agreement will enter into force and replace the existing one upon ratification by the EFTA States and Turkey. Information on the new agreement can be found far below this page.

Summary

The Agreement covers trade in industrial products as well as fish and marine products and processed agricultural products. The transitional period ended on 1 January 1999. In addition, bilateral agricultural agreements between the individual EFTA countries and Turkey have been concluded which form part of the instruments creating the free trade area.

The objectives of the Agreement (Article 1) are among other to promote, through the expansion of reciprocal trade, the harmonious development of economic relations between the Parties. The Agreement includes provisions relating to the elimination of customs duties and other trade barriers as well as other trade-related disciplines such as rules of competition, protection of intellectual property, public procurement, state monopolies, state aid, and payments and transfers. A Joint Committee, which supervises the Agreement, is established under the Agreement.

 

Content of the Free Trade Agreement

The Agreement consists of a total of 35 Articles, 11 Annexes, 3 Protocols, and one Record of Understandings, covering the following subjects:

  • Trade in Goods
  • Public Procurement
  • Intellectual Property
  • Competition
  • State Aid
  • Joint Committee and Dispute Settlement

 

Trade in Goods

Turkey is one of the most important partner countries among EFTA’s 20 free trade partners and an important market for EFTA’s exports, with significant growth potential.

Bilateral trade in goods in 2001 amounted to 1,307.3 million USD (EFTA exports amounting to 920 million USD, whereas Turkey's exports to the EFTA States represented 382.3 million USD.

Rules of Origin

The rules of origin for industrial goods (Protocol B) concerning the definition of the concept of originating products and the methods for administrative co-operation, are based on the current pan-European model, maintaining the general structure and the substance of the European standard rules. The specific list rules (Annex II to Protocol B) are also based on the current pan-European model.

Industrial Goods

The Agreement provides for effective market access for industrial goods in terms of tariffs and rules of origin, creating EFTA and EU parity for EFTA exports to Turkey. Since 1 January 1999 all industrial goods - except certain products of the European Atomic Energy Community (EURATOM) - originating in the EFTA States have enjoyed duty-free access into Turkey. Industrial goods originating in Turkey have benefited from duty-free access to the EFTA States as of entry into force of the Agreement.

Fish and marine products

The Agreement covers trade in all fish and other marine products (Article 4 and Annex II). The EFTA States and Turkey grant each other duty free access on imports of all fish and marine products.

Agricultural products

Trade in processed agricultural products are covered in a Protocol under the main Agreement (Protocol A). The Protocol grants concessions for products such as sugar confectionary, pasta, prepared foods, sauces and preparations, soups, waters etc.

Trade in basic agricultural products is covered in three bilateral agricultural agreements negotiated between the respective EFTA State Iceland, Norway and Switzerland/Liechtenstein and Turkey. These agreements form part of the instruments establishing the free trade area. They provide for substantial concessions on both sides, while taking into account the respective sensitivities. Each agreement contains specific rules of origin, generally based on the “wholly-obtained” criteria.

 

Public Procurement

The Article on public procurement (Article 14) contains a review clause with a view to further liberalize the public procurement markets of the Parties.

 

Intellectual Property

The provisions on protection of intellectual property rights (Article 15 and a new Annex XII) covers, inter alia, patents, trademarks and copyright and geographical indications.

The level of protection in certain areas goes beyond what is stipulated under the WTO Agreement on Trade Related aspects of Intellectual Property, taking into account the principles of most favoured nation treatment and of national treatment.

 

Competition

Regarding competition (Article 17), the Agreement includes provisions on co-operation and exchange of information in the Joint Committee meeting with the aim of ensuring that the benefits of the Agreement are not perturbed by private anti- competitive behaviour.

 

State Aid

The Agreement contains comprehensive and specific rules governing the granting of state aid by public authorities of the partner countries (Article 18 and Annex X). The objective of these provisions is to ensure that aid granted by the authorities to private entities do not distort, or threaten to distort, competition among undertakings in the applicable territories of the agreement. The Parties shall ensure transparency of state aid measures by exchanging information as provided for in Annex XI (Annex XI).

 

Joint Committee and Dispute Settlement

A Joint Committee comprising the EFTA States and Turkey supervises the implementation of the free trade agreement (Articles 25 and 26).

Consultations are the fundamental mechanism of dispute settlement between the FTA partners. The agreement implies that the Parties are to endeavour to solve any differences between them on the interpretation and application of the agreement by direct consultations, and, if need be, through consultations in the Joint Committee.

Annexes and Record of Understanding
Trade in Goods Annex I Referred to in Sub-Paragraph 1 (a) of Article 2    
  Protocol A Concerning Products referred to in Sub-Paragraph 1 (b) of Article 2 Table to Protocol A  
  Annex II Referred to in Sub-Paragraph 1 (c) of Article 2    
  Protocol B Concerning the definition of the concept of "Originating Products" and Methods of Administrative Co-operation Annex I Introductory Notes
      Annex II List Rules
      Annex IIIA Movement Certificate EUR.1
      Annex IIIB Movement Certificate EUR-MED
      Annex IVA Invoice Declaration
      Annex IVB Invoice DeclarationEUR-MED
      Annex V Stamps (Deleted)
  Annex III Products to which a Particular Timetable for the Duty Reductions applies (deleted)    
  Annex IV Referred to in Paragraphs 2 and 3 of Article 4 (deleted)    
  Annex V Referred to in Paragraph 3 of Article 4 (deleted)    
  Annex VI Referred to in Paragraph 1 of Article 5 (deleted)    
  Annex VII Referred to in Paragraph 2 of Article 6 (deleted)    
  Annex VIII Referred to in Paragraph 2 of Article 7 (deleted)    
  Annex IX Referred to in Article 10 (deleted)    
  Annex X Referred to in Paragraph 2 of Article 18 (deleted)    
  Annex XI Referred to in Paragraph 4 of Article 18 (deleted)    
  Protocol C Concerning the treatment that may be applied by Liechtenstein and Switzerland to imports of certain products subject to the scheme for building up compulsory reserves    
  Protocol D Concerning mutual administrative assistance in Customs Matters referred to in Article 3 (3) of the Agreement    
  Protocol E Mutual recognition of Conformity Assessment of Products    
IPR Annex XII Referred to in Article 15    
Other   Record of Understanding    

 

Bilateral Agreements on Agriculture

 

Iceland-Turkey
Norway-Turkey
Switzerland-Turkey - English / French / German / Italian

 

Joint Committee Decisions

 

Decision Subject Adopted Entry into force
2017
No. 1/2017 Amendment to Protocol B 06.04.2017  
2009
No. 3/2009 Mutual Recognition of Conformity Assessment of Products 03.12.2009 05.07.2011
No. 2/2009 Amendment to Protocol B 03.12.2009 01.06.2011
No. 1/2009 Amendment to Protocol A 03.12.2009 01.06.2011
2006
No. 3/2006 Protocol B Amendment to Euro-med 31.05.2006 01.09.2007
No. 2/2006 Protocol A 31.05.2006 01.02.2008
No. 1/2006 Annex I 31.05.2006 01.02.2008
2005
No. 1/2005 Article 18 State Aid 15.05.2005 15.08.2011
2004
No. 2/2004 Deletion of Annex VIII 01.07.2004 01.07.2004
No. 1/2004 Deletion of Annex IV 01.07.2004 01.07.2004
2002
No. 3/2002 Amendment to Protocol A 05.11.2002 01.01.2003
No. 2/2002 Annex II 05.11.2002 01.01.2003
No. 1/2002 Amendments to Protocol B 05.11.2002 01.01.2003
2001
No. 1/2001 Amendment to Protocol A 14.06.2001 01.07.2001
2000
No. 4/2000 Introduction of a new Protocol D 16.11.2000 09.02.2004
No. 3/2000 Amendment to Annex II 16.11.2000 16.11.2000
No. 2/2000 Amendments to Annex I 16.11.2000 01.01.2001
No. 1/2000 Amendments to Protocol B 16.11.2000 01.01.2001
1999
No. 1/1999 Amendments to Protocol B 28.09.1999 01.01.2000
1998
No. 9/1998 Deletion of Annex VI (Customs duties of a fiscal nature) 01.07.1998 01.07.1998
No. 8/1998 Deletion of Annex V 01.07.1998 01.01.1999
No. 7/1998 Amendment to Annex IV (deleted by Decision No. 1/2004) 01.07.1998 01.01.1999
No. 6/1998 Amendment to Protocol B 01.07.1998 01.02.2000
No. 5/1998 Amendment to Annex I 01.07.1998 01.07.1998
No. 4/1998 Amendment to Article 15 and new Annex XII on Protection of Intellectual Property 04.02.1998 19.12.2002
No. 3/1998 Amendment of Article 10 and deletion of Annex IX concerning Technical Regulations 04.02.1998 19.12.2002
No. 2/1998 Amendment to Annex VIII (deleted by Decision No. 2/2004) 04.02.1998 04.02.1998
No. 1/1998 Deletion of Annex III 04.02.1998 04.02.1998
1996
No. 4/1996 Amendment to Article 35 concerning the depositary of the Agreement 18/19.04.1996 19.12.2002
No. 3/1996 Amendment to Annex VIII (deleted by Decision No. 2/2004) 18/19.04.1996 19.04.1996
No. 2/1996 Deletion of Annex VII 18/19.04.1996 19.04.1996
No. 1/1996 Amendment to Annex VI (deleted by Decision No. 9/1998) 18/19.04.1996 19.04.1996
1993
No. 2/1993 Amendments to, and corrections of technical errors in Annexes and Protocols to the Agreement 22/23.11.1993 23.11.1993
No. 1/1993 State Aid - Rules for the implementation of Article 18, para. 4 22/23.11.1993 23.11.1993
1992
No. 4/1992 Amendment to Annex II on fish and other marine products 19.11.1992 19.11.1992
No. 3/1992 Amendments to, and corrections of technical errors in Annexes and Protocols to the Agreement 19.11.1992 19.11.1992
No. 2/1992 Establishment of a Sub-Committee on customs and origin matters 19.11.1992 19.11.1992
No. 1/1992 Rules of Procedure of the Joint Committee 19.11.1992 19.11.1992

 

EFTA-Turkey Free Trade Agreement 2018

A modernised and expanded Free Trade Agreement was signed in Sauðárkrókur, Iceland, on 25 June 2018. This new Agreement will enter into force and replace the existing one upon ratification by the EFTA States and Turkey.

Summary

At the 11th meeting of the Joint Committee under the existing EFTA-Turkey FTA, held on 19 June 2014 in Ankara, both sides agreed on the scope and process for further developing the Agreement. The negotiations for the modernisation and expansion of the existing Agreement started in September 2014 and were concluded in November 2017 in six rounds.

The modernised EFTA-Turkey FTA was signed on 25 June 2018 and covers trade in goods (industrial products as well as fish and marine products and processed agricultural products), trade in services, the protection of intellectual property rights, government procurement, competition, and trade and sustainable development. In addition, updated bilateral agricultural agreements between the individual EFTA countries and Turkey continue to form part of the instruments creating the free trade area.

 

Content of the Agreement

The Agreement consists of 10 Chapters and 21 Annexes, covering the following main subjects:

  • Trade in Goods including Rules of Origin, Trade Facilitation, Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures, Technical Barriers to Trade and Trade Remedies
  • Trade in Services
  • Protection of Intellectual Property
  • Government Procurement
  • Competition
  • Trade and Sustainable Development
  • Institutional Provisions
  • Dispute Settlement

 

Trade in Goods

The Agreements provides for the abolishment of all customs duties on imports and exports of industrial products, including fish and other marine products, originating in an EFTA State or in Turkey. Already under the existing Agreement, all industrial products originating in the EFTA States enjoy duty-free access into Turkey since 1 January 1999. Industrial products originating in Turkey have benefited from duty-free access to the EFTA States as of entry into force of the existing Agreement on 1 April 1992.

The Agreement provides for tariff concessions on processed agricultural products, as covered by Annex III. Trade in basic agricultural products is covered in three bilateral agricultural agreements negotiated between the respective EFTA State Iceland, Norway and Switzerland/Liechtenstein and Turkey. While the bilateral agriculture agreements between Norway and Turkey, as well as Iceland and Turkey will remain in force, the bilateral agriculture agreement between Switzerland and Turkey was also modernised and will replace the existing bilateral agriculture agreement upon into force of the modernised EFTA-Turkey FTA. These bilateral agriculture agreements form part of the instruments establishing the free trade area. They provide for substantial concessions on both sides, while taking into account the respective sensitivities.  

The rules of origin (Annex I) are governed by the Regional Convention on Pan-Euro-Mediterranean rules of origin. This allows for accumulation of materials originating in the EFTA States, Turkey and the other “Pan-Euro-Med” member countries once the respective agreements are in place between the parties concerned.

The Agreement contains detailed provisions on trade facilitation (Annex VI), including some “WTO +” provisions. Furthermore, it includes provisions on sanitary and phytosanitary measures (article 2.11), technical regulations (article 2.12) and trade remedies (articles 2.17-2.19) in conformity with the relevant WTO Agreements.

Trade in Services

Chapter 3 closely follows the WTO General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) approach. It covers trade in all services sectors under all four modes of supply. Separate annexes on recognition of qualifications of service suppliers (Annex X), movement of natural persons supplying services (Annex XI), electronic commerce (Annex XIII), telecommunication services (Annex XVI), co-productions (Annex XV), financial services (Annex XVI), health services (Annex XVII), tourism and travel services (Annex XVII) and international road transport and logistics services (Annex XIX) complement the chapter with additional disciplines specific to those sectors. The Parties’ lists of specific commitments and exemptions from most-favoured-nation (MFN) treatment are contained in Annexes XII and IX, respectively. Those lists shall be reviewed periodically with the aim to further liberalise trade in services between both sides.

Intellectual property rights

The provisions on protection of intellectual property rights (Chapter 4 and Annex XX) cover, inter alia, trademarks, copyrights, patents and geographical indications, and include provisions for the enforcement of intellectual property rights and cooperation among the Parties. They are based on the WTO Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) and provide for a high level of protection, taking into account the principles of most-favoured-nation treatment and of national treatment.

Government procurement

The Agreement also includes provisions on public procurement (chapter 5) aiming in particular at ensuring transparency, as well as including a review clause.

Competition

In chapter 6, the Parties recognise that anti-competitive business practices have the potential to undermine the benefits of liberalisation arising from the Agreement. They highlight the importance of cooperation and consultations regarding issues relating to competition law enforcement. Furthermore, the chapter provides the Parties with the possibility to take appropriate measures if an anti-competitive practice continues to affect trade, despite previous cooperation and consultation. Priority shall be given to such measures that will least disturb the functioning of this Agreement.

Trade and Sustainable Development

The Parties recognise that economic development, social development and environmental protection are interdependent. In chapter 7 they reaffirm their commitment to multilateral environmental and labour agreements and principles and undertake to uphold levels of protection while recognising the right of each Party to establish its own level of environmental and labour protection. Arbitration procedures do not apply to this chapter.

Institutional provisions and dispute settlements

Chapter 8 establishes a Joint Committee to supervise and administer the Agreement and to oversee its further development. The Joint Committee, which normally meets every two years, may modify the Agreement or consider and propose amendments, as provided for in the Agreement. Chapter 9 sets out the rules and procedures applying with respect to the avoidance or settlement of any disputes that may arise between Parties concerning the interpretation or application of the Agreement.

 

Free Trade Agreement 2018

Table of Contents
EFTA-Turkey Free Trade Agreement 2018
Trade in Goods Annex I

Rules of Origin and Methods of Administrative Cooperation

     
  Annex II

Products not covered by the Agreement

     
  Annex III

Referred to in Article 2.1

Processed Agricultural Products

     
  Annex IV

Referred to in Article 2.1

Fish, Fisheries Products and Other Marine Products

     
  Annex V

Mutual Recognition of Results of Conformity Assessment of Goods

     
  Annex VI

Trade Faciliation

     
  Annex VII

Mutual Administrative Assistance in Customs matters 

     
  Annex VIII

Mandate on the Sub-Committee on Customs Matters

     
  Annex IX List of MFN Exemptions Appendix 1: Iceland    
      Appendix 2: Liechtenstein    
      Appendix 3: Norway    
      Appendix 4: Switzerland    
      Appendix 5: Turkey    
Trade in Services Annex X

Recognition of Qualifications of Service Suppliers

     
  Annex XI

 

Movement of Natural Persons Supplying Services

     
  Annex XII Schedules of Specific Commitments Appendix 1: Iceland    
      Appendix 2: Liechtenstein    
      Appendix 3: Norway    
      Appendix 4: Switzerland    
      Appendix 5: Turkey    
  Annex XIII

Electronic Commerce

     
  Annex XIV

Telecommunications Services

     
  Annex XV

Co-Productions

     
  Annex XVI

Financial Services

     
  Annex XVII

Referred to in Article 3.21

Health Services

     
  Annex XVIII

Referred to in Article 3.21

Tourism and Travel Services

     
  Annex XIX

International Road Transport and Logistics Services

     
Protection of Intellectual Property Annex XX

Protection of Intellectual Property

     
Institutional Provisions Annex XXI

Rules of Procedure of the

EFTA-Turkey Joint Committee

     

 

Bilateral Agreements on Agriculture

Iceland-Turkey
Norway-Turkey
Switzerland-Turkey

 

Officer
Trade Relations Division

+41 22 332 26 13