About EFTA News
EFTA 1960-2010 – Partners in Progress
The European Free Trade Association (EFTA) celebrates its 50th Anniversary in 2010 and the 15th Anniversary of the EEA Agreement in 2009.
EFTA Ministerial Meeting in Hamar
The EFTA Ministers signed a Free Trade Agreement with the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC). They welcomed the ratification of the Free Trade Agreement with Canada and the recent signing of a Joint Declaration on Cooperation with Mauritius. Ministers welcomed the start of negotiations with Ukraine, Serbia and Albania. Ministers noted the recent steps taken to prepare for negotiations of an FTA between the EFTA States and Russia, and agreed to assess the feasibility of launching such negotiations in the second half of 2009. They decided to open free trade negotiations with Hong Kong and to examine, jointly with Vietnam, the feasibility of a free trade agreement. The EEA EFTA Ministers welcomed the inclusion of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology and the Services Directive into the Agreement. They complimented the successful round-up of commitments under the EEA and Norwegian Financial Mechanisms 2004-2009, and underlined the importance of finalising the ongoing negotiations on the future financial contributions as soon as possible.
EFTA Ministerial Meeting in Geneva
EFTA Ministers were joined by Mr Luis Guillermo Plata, Minister of Trade, Industry and Tourism of Colombia, for the signing of the EFTA-Colombia Free Trade Agreement. The EFTA Ministers welcomed the commencement of negotiations with India and look forward to the settling of the last outstanding issues in the negotiations with Peru. They endorsed the EFTA-Russia Joint Study Group Report and expressed their wish to start preparations for the opening of free trade negotiations in 2009. Ministers further expressed their readiness to launch negotiations with Albania, Serbia and Ukraine.
Communiqué from the EFTA Ministerial Meeting in Geneva on 3 December 2007
EFTA Ministers welcomed the Joint Study between India and EFTA which could lead to future negotiations on a free trade agreement. Furthermore, the Ministers expressed satisfaction with the good progress in the free trade negotiations with the countries of the Gulf cooperation Council (GCC), Colombia and Peru and looked forward to a successful conclusion of those negotiations. Ministers also welcomed the entry into force of the Free Trade Agreement with Egypt on 1 August 2007 and the forthcoming entry into force of the Free Trade Agreement with the Southern African Customs Union (SACU).
Communique from the EFTA Ministerial Meeting, Vaduz 28 June 2007
The EFTA Ministers welcomed the conclusion of the free trade negotiations with Canada. They noted the good progress made in the negotiations with the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and by the Joint Feasibility Study Group with India. They also expressed their satisfaction with the successful start of negotiations with Colombia and Peru and the signing of a Joint Declaration on Co-operation with Mongolia. Ministers furthermore welcomed the conclusion of the negotiations on the enlargement of the EEA with Bulgaria and Romania. They emphasised the importance of timely participation of EEA EFTA States in EU programmes.