EFTA and Georgia hold their first Joint Committee meeting

Published 13-05-2022
From left: Patrick Ritter, Minister Counsellor, Liechtenstein - Harald Aspelund, Ambassador, Iceland - Genadi Arveladze, Deputy Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development of Georgia - Jan Farberg, Director General, Norway - Martin Baumgartner, Senior Adviser, Switzerland.

On 13 May 2022, delegations from the EFTA States and Georgia met in Geneva for the first Joint Committee meeting after the entry into force of the EFTA–Georgia Free Trade Agreement. 

Mr Jan Farberg, Director General at the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Fisheries of Norway, acted as EFTA spokesperson, while Mr Genadi Arveladze, Deputy Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development, headed the Georgian delegation.

The Joint Committee discussed the operation of the Agreement, focusing on services and e-commerce, and delegations informed each other on their trade relations and developments in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic and addressed recent challenges due to Russia’s war against Ukraine. Delegations also discussed the functioning of the chapter on trade and sustainable development and progress achieved in pursuing the objectives set out in the chapter.

The Joint Committee adopted two decisions, the first establishing the rules of procedure of the Joint Committee and the second providing for the use of the alternative rules of the pan-Euro-Mediterranean (PEM Convention).

The Joint Committee meeting was preceded by the first meeting of the Sub-Committee on Trade in Goods in hybrid format, where experts discussed the exchange of preference utilisation data, trade facilitation and relevant topics of the PEM Convention. 

In 2021, the EFTA States exported goods worth more than USD 73 million to Georgia. Pharmaceutical products accounted for over half of this amount. Frozen fish and watches were also important export products. In return, EFTA’s imports from Georgia amounted to approximately USD 17 million and were mainly composed of knitted apparel or clothing accessories, edible fruit and nuts, and vehicles.

EFTA’s full report of the meeting is available here

See the Joint Committee agenda here.

Read more about merchandise trade between EFTA and Georgia here.

Read more about the EFTA–Georgia Free Trade Agreement here.

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