European Free Trade Association


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Related to European Free Trade Association: European Union, European Economic Area

European Free Trade Association (EFTA)

a regional ‘free trade area’ established in 1959 with the general objective of securing the benefits to be derived from greater INTERNATIONAL TRADE (see TRADE INTEGRATION entry for details). There were originally seven members of EFTA: the UK, Sweden, Switzerland, Austria, Denmark, Norway and Portugal; these countries opted for a less comprehensive integration of their economies than that required by membership of the EUROPEAN UNION (EU) formed the year previously. In 1973, however, the UK and Denmark left and joined the EU, and Portugal joined the EU in 1986. Three countries have joined EFTA: Finland in 1961, Iceland in 1970 and Liechtenstein in 1991. However, the whole future of EFTA has been put in the melting pot as a further three members (Finland, Austria and Sweden) joined the European Union in 1995 and it is possible that others may follow. See EUROPEAN ECONOMIC AREA.

European Free Trade Association (EFTA)

a regional alliance established by the Stockholm Treaty, 1959, with the general objective of securing the benefits of FREE TRADE for its member countries. EFTA came about following the breakdown of attempts in the latter half of the 1950s to create a large European-based CUSTOMS UNION. Those countries in favour of the customs union approach, with its detailed commitment to long-term economic integration, duly formed the EUROPEAN UNION (EU) in 1958. The remainder, for a variety of reasons such as colonial connections and a political preference for neutrality, chose the FREE TRADE AREA route and formed EFTA.

There were seven original members of EFTA: Austria, the UK, Denmark, Norway, Portugal, Sweden and Switzerland. Finland joined in 1961, Iceland in 1970 and Liechtenstein in 1991. In 1973, however, the UK and Denmark left and joined the EU, and Finland, Sweden and Austria joined the EU in 1995.

Import restrictions on trade between member countries were abolished in stages over the period 1960–66, while each country continued to operate its own separate TARIFFS, etc., against nonmembers.

See EUROPEAN ECONOMIC AREA, GAINS FROM TRADE.

References in periodicals archive ?
In 1989, some 1,300 cross-border deals took place, involving companies in the EC and European Free Trade Association (EFTA) countries, for a total disclosed value of ecu 45 billion (about U.S.$57 billion as of mid July 1990).
The EEC is surrounded by the countries of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) i.e.
Of the four major parts into which the book is divided the first part, is the largest, with seventeen papers on the overall theme of the problems and prospects of ASEAN co-operation in various fields; the other three parts of the book are devoted to the analysis of the experiences of European economic integration, of the European Free Trade Association and of economic co-operation between Australia and New Zealand and discuss the possible lessons for ASEAN that can be drawn from these experiences.
ISLAMABAD -- The European Free Trade Association (EFTA) - a trade organisation consisting of Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland - has shown its interest to sign a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with Pakistan, Pakistan Today has learnt.
During his performance as an official of Mincetur, Edgar Vsquez was part of the bilateral negotiations with the United States, Chile, Mexico, Singapore, Canada, China, the European Free Trade Association (EFTA), the European Union, Korea and Japan.
He added exporters must exploit existing and prospective trade deals, including the country's free trade agreement with the European Free Trade Association and trade perks from the European Union and the United States.
Joining the European Free Trade Association and European Economic Area would mean an exciting future, free from pressure to join the euro or a European army, but with access to the job-saving Single Market.
The book looks at milestones of this period, from the beginnings of the European Economic Community (EEC), through negotiations for British and Danish EEC membership, the Free Trade Area, and the European Free Trade Association (EFTA).
The Philippines has addressed the problem which has prevented the country from implementing preferential tariffs for products originating in the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) on time.
Saeed Abdallah, head of the trade agreements sector at the Ministry of Trade and Industry, announced on Friday that the trade exchange between Egypt and European Free Trade Association (EFTA) countries recorded $1.287bn in 2017.
The European Free Trade Association is a regional trade organization and free trade area consisting of four European States including Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.
1ST PHILIPPINES-EUROPEAN FREE TRADE ASSOCIATION TRADE TALKS - The first round of free trade talks between the Philippines and the members of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) - Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland - convened 24-27 March 2015 in Makati City Philippines.

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