Ambassador Sabine Monauni, the incoming Liechtenstein Chair presented the Standing Committee’s priorities for the next six months. Among these priorities are commitments to reducing the backlog of adopted EU acts awaiting incorporation into the EEA Agreement particularly in the field of financial services, to continue to place emphasis on decision shaping, and to continue the dialogue among the EEA EFTA States, the EU and the UK to ensure the UK’s orderly withdrawal from the EEA Agreement.
Furthermore, the priorities of the Liechtenstein Chair include a commitment to organising events and outreach activities celebrating the 25th anniversary of the EEA Agreement, and to use the occasion to promote the EEA Agreement both in the EEA EFTA States and the EU.
Ambassador Monauni also took the opportunity to welcome the new Norwegian Ambassador to the EU, Mr Rolf Einar Fife.
In addition to the adoption of Joint Committee Decisions, the EEA Joint Committee, chaired by Ms Angelina Eichhorst, EEAS Deputy Managing Director, approved the Annual Report of the EEA Joint Committee for 2018. The Annual Report takes stock of the functioning of the EEA Agreement and provides an overview of the Committee’s work in 2018.
In total, the EEA Joint Committee met eight times in 2018 and adopted 258 decisions, incorporating 433 legal acts. Among the more significant Decisions adopted by the EEA Joint Committee were the protection of natural persons with regard to the processing of personal data and on the free movement of such data (General Data Protection Regulation), anti-money laundering, and the powers of the European Supervisory Authorities (Omnibus II).
The Report also noted that the EEA EFTA States participated in 15 EU programmes through the EEA Agreement, and contributed to decision shaping by submitting 13 EEA EFTA Comments on subjects such as the marketing and use of explosive precursors, work-life balance, and EEA EFTA participation in EU programmes.
In the Joint Committee, the EFTA Secretariat also took the opportunity to present its new web tool on “how EU law becomes EEA law”.
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