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Photo: Nina Herland/UD.Photo: Nina Herland/UD

The Norwegian Ambassador to the WTO, Mr. Harald Neple, signed an agreement with the ITC, granting NOK 40 Million (app. USD 6 Million) to ITC’s work in 2014 and 2015.

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From left: Mr Gunnar Bragi Sveinsson, Minister for Foreign Affairs and External Trade, Iceland; Mr Johann N. Schneider-Ammann (Chair), Federal Councillor, Head of the Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research, Switzerland; Ms Aurelia Frick, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Liechtenstein; Ms Monica Mæland, Minister of Trade and Industry, Norway; and Mr Kristinn F. Árnason, Secretary-General, EFTA. 
Photo: EFTA Secretariat.

EFTA held its Ministerial Meeting on 17 November in Geneva. The meeting was chaired by Mr Johann N. Schneider-Ammann, Federal Councillor, Head of the Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research of Switzerland. The Norwegian delegation was headed by Minister of Trade and Industry, Ms Monica Mæland.

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Photo: Evan Lewis.

The negotiations on the EGA, held in Geneva on 22-26 September 2014, showed good progress towards reaching an agreement to ensure free trade on environmental goods.

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Last night’s failure to reach an agreement is highly regrettable. Everything we achieved in Bali may now unravel, putting multilateral trade negotiations on hold, said Foreign Minister Børge Brende.

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We, a group of developed and developing Members strongly supportive of the WTO, are dismayed that today’s General Council meeting did not bring Members any closer to adopting the Protocol relating to the Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) by the agreed deadline.

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The Norwegian diplomat Dag Wernø Holter was appointed as new Deputy Secretary General of EFTA in Brussels at the Council meeting in Geneva 6 November. Wernø Holter will assume office on 15 January 2015.

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Photo: UD.

It is important that the negotiations in the World Trade Organization (WTO) be put back on track, underlined Foreign Minister Børge Brende when he met with WTO Director-General Roberto Azevêdo and several WTO ambassadors in Geneva on 30 September.

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Norway's Ambassador to the WTO expressed grave concerns regarding the seeming inability to follow up on the agreements reached at Bali in December 2013. In his statement at the General Council 25 July Ambassador Neple underlined that it is not possible to reopen one of the Bali decisions without unravelling the entire package.

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Photo: EFTA.

EFTA held its Ministerial meeting in the Westman Islands, Iceland on 23 June. The meeting was chaired by Mr Gunnar Bragi Sveinsson, Minister for Foreign Affairs and External Trade of Iceland. The Norwegian delegation was headed by Ms Monica Mæland, Minister of Trade and Industry.

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