EFTA Council comes together in Geneva for its third meeting in 2023

Published 03-05-2023
From left to right: Mr Einar Gunnarsson - Ambassador of Iceland, Ms Helga Helland - Deputy Permanent Representative Norwegian Mission in Geneva, Mr Petter Ølberg - Ambassador of Norway

The EFTA Council met in Geneva on 3 May for the third time this year and for the seventh time under Liechtenstein’s Chairmanship.

Delegates were informed about EFTA-EU relations, including recent Subcommittee, Standing and Joint Committee meetings and preparations for the upcoming EEA Council on 24 May.

Delegates reviewed third-country processes including the recent fifth round of negotiations with Chile in Santiago in late March, the fourth round of negotiations with Thailand in the last week of April, and progress in the negotiations for a Digital Economy Agreement with Singapore. On India, delegates discussed the meeting at ministerial level that took place in New-Delhi on 26 April on prospects of resuming the negotiations towards a Trade and Economic Partnership Agreement.

Furthermore, the Council discussed horizontal issues, particularly work towards a model chapter on Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), the Sustainability Impact Assessment (SIA) for Thailand and preference utilisation in free trade agreements. Delegates discussed preparations for the upcoming EFTA Ministerial meeting in Schaan on 27 June.

The next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, 13 June 2023.

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