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EFTA

While often overlooked, the European Free Trade Association — composed of Iceland, Lichtenstein, Norway and Switzerland — actively seeks comprehensive bilateral FTAs much like its rivals the EU, the US, Japan, Canada or Australia. EFTA’s outward push towards FTAs is led and dominated by corporate powerhouse Switzerland, home to some of the world’s biggest pharmaceutical, agricultural biotechnology, banking and insurance companies.

EFTA has established important bilateral FTAs with Chile (2003), Israel (1992), Jordan (2001), Korea (2005), Lebanon (2004), Mexico (2000), Morocco (1997), the Palestinian Authority (1998), Turkey (1991), Singapore (2002), Tunisia (2004), the Southern Africa Customs Union (2006), Egypt (2007), Canada (2007), the GCC (2008), Colombia (2008) and Peru (2008).

The group is currently negotiating FTAs with India, Indonesia, Thailand, Algeria and Pakistan. It is expected to launch talks shortly with Malaysia and Vietnam, while similar deals with Russia and Ukraine are planned for later.

last update: May 2012


EFTA states plan response to TTIP
The European Free Trade Association (EFTA) countries could be faced with important challenges from the proposed European Union-United States free trade agreement known as the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, Swiss Federal Councillor Johan Schneider-Amman has said.
Switzerland hopes to resume India-EFTA free trade pact talks
Switzerland today expressed hope that negotiations along with three other countries on broad-based trade and economic partnership agreement with India would resume at the earliest.
Talks on free trade agreement among CU and EFTA countries held in Astana
Negotiations on concluding a free trade agreement among the member-states of the Customs Union of Belarus, Kazakhstan, the Russian Federation and the countries of the European Free Trade Association (Iceland, Lichtenstein, Norway and Switzerland) are under way.
The Efta court clashes with Norway’s Supreme Court
Norway’s Supreme Court was wrong to rule that companies posting workers to the Norwegian shipbuilding industry must pay their travel, board and lodging expenses, argues the Efta Court’s President in a general attack on the Supreme Court. He accuses it of being disloyal to the EEA agreement and indicates the last word may still not been had.
European Free Trade Association and Customs Union negotiate on free trade agreement
Kazakh city of Astana hosts the seventh round of negotiations on free trade agreement between the member states of the Customs Union (CU) and the countries of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) on January 28-31, Kazakh Economy and Budget planning ministry reported on Monday.
HK’s first free trade agreement with European economies to enter into force
The Free Trade Agreement between Hong Kong and the Member States of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA States), namely Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland, will soon enter into force, a spokesman of Hong Kong’ government announced Friday.
EFTA, Indonesia Hold FTA Negotiations
The fourth round of negotiations towards a ’Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement’ between the European Free Trade Association states and Indonesia concluded on March 29, 2012.
Parliamentarians from EFTA and Indonesia support comprehensive economic partnership
A delegation from the EFTA Parliamentary Committee visited Jakarta, Indonesia, from 7 to 10 February to discuss the merits of strengthened EFTA-Indonesia trade relations with legislators, officials and stakeholders, and to support the ongoing negotiations between EFTA and Indonesia on a comprehensive economic partnership agreement (CEPA)
Swiss seek improved trade with Brazil and Chile
Economics Minister Johann Schneider-Ammann is keen to demonstrate that Switzerland’s foreign trade strategy for emerging markets is not just empty talk.
Swiss seek fresh impetus from India trade talks
Switzerland is seeking to improve access to the Indian market for its chemical and pharmaceutical products, machines and watches and to extend patent protection to prevent Indian producers of cheap generic drugs benefiting from clinical tests developed by other companies

    Links


  • EFTA FTAs
    Database of all FTAs entered into by the European Free Trade Association (Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.)
  • EFTA Secretariat
    Website of the EFTA Secretariat