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PR(94)20: Surveillance Authority taking stock of implementation of EEA Agreement - first semi-annual report presented

15.10.2002

The first Semi‑annual Report of the EFTA Surveillance Authority was today presented by its President, Knut Almestad, who went on to take stock of the Authority's work so far. He was also commenting on the present status of implementation of the EEA Agreement on the EFTA side.

As of 13 October 1994, the EFTA Surveillance Authority has adopted 119 formal decisions, opened 29 cases on its own initiative (excluding competition cases) and received 165 complaints (regarding all EFTA States participating in the EEA). After having received some 3.500 notifications from EFTA States, it has established an overview of the transposition into national law of the entire EEA Agreement, i.e. its articles and protocols and more than 1500 legal acts referred to in its annexes. Implementation control of the "additional package", which by 1 July 1994 brought in almost half the number of original acts in the EEA Agreement itself, is also well under way.

Almost 400 existing state aid schemes are being analyzed by the Authority. 37 notifications of new state aid have been received and decisions taken on 15 cases. Monopolies in EFTA States are being examined. In the field of competition policy, the Authority is handling 108 cases of its own. It has further received 114 co­operation cases from the European Commission, to which comments and factual input may be given.

'We now have established a fairly clear picture of the status of implementation of EEA law in EFTA countries” summarises Knut Almestad, President of the EFTA Surveillance Authority. 'We had to initiate formal action in some instances while continued examination is most likely to lead to further action. Still, the main impression is that EFTA States have worked very consistently and the mechanisms necessary for the functioning of the EEA are now well established."

It will be recalled that on the side of the five EFTA States participating in the EEA (Austria, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden), the EFTA Surveillance Authority has the same powers and similar functions to those of the European Commission. It shall ensure that EFTA States respect their obligations under the EEA Agreement, and that enterprises comply with the EEA competition rules.

For a copy of the report please contact Inger‑Lise Thorkildsen on tel. 22 66 881.




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