Significant Progress in Negotiating FTAs with EFTA

Technical teams from Central America and the European Free Trade Association (Switzerland, Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein) are making good progress in the second round of negotiations on an FTA.

Friday, June 8, 2012

From a press release from the Costa Rican Ministry of Foreign Trade:

Technical teams from Central America (Costa Rica, Honduras and Panama) and the European Free Trade Association (Switzerland, Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein) are making good progress in the second round of negotiations on an FTA.

"This meeting has allowed us to advance the discussion of legal texts, bring positions close together and agree on provisions of great importance to both parties.

We have advances in the positions on government procurement, services, intellectual property and rules of origin, where the possibility of regional cumulation was agreed on (among the countries participating in the negotiation) and an extended accumulation, which would allow us in the future to manufacture using materials originating from a third country which has a free trade agreement in common.

We are ready to exchange offers over market access from 20 July", said, the Panamanian Deputy Minister of Foreign Trade, Fernando Ocampo.

The next round of negotiations will be held in Costa Rica, during the week of Aug. 27. If the negotiations progress according to the schedule the process will be completed in the second half of this year.



More on this topic

Progress in Negotiations with EFTA

August 2012

The third round of negotiations for EFTA ended on Friday August 24th having made significant progress.

A press release from the Costa Rican Ministry of Foreign reads:

This Friday, in Costa Rica, saw the conclusion of the third round of negotiations for a Free Trade Agreement between Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, Panama and the countries of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA acronym) comprising Switzerland, Norway, Liechtenstein and Iceland.

Guatemala Joins FTA with EFTA countries

August 2012

After consultation with the productive sectors Guatemala's government has decided to join the group of Central American countries negotiating a free trade agreement with Switzerland, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway.

Guatemala had ruled out the idea of participating in the negotiations for a free trade agreement which Panama, Costa Rica and Honduras began with Switzerland, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, members of the old continent that are not part of the European Union and that in turn make up the European Free Trade Association (EFTA).

Central America Negotiates New Trade Deal

February 2012

The region will hold the first round of negotiations with the European Free Trade Association (EFTA).

The round of negotiations will take place between February 27th and March 1st.

Efta members are Switzerland, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, all countries outside the European Union.

FTA between EFTA and Central America

November 2011

The European Free Trade Association (EFTA), comprising of Switzerland, Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein, will negotiate a free trade agreement with Costa Rica, Honduras and Panama.

The announcement was made by the Swiss Minister of Economics, who said that EFTA member states agreed on the need to deepen relations with Central American states.

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