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Slovenia Expanding the Free Trade Zone Successfully

Ljubljana, 15 December - TOPIC/WEEK
Upon having signed an associate agreement, Slovenia concluded a free trade agreement with the European Union (EU) countries. A free trade agreement with the European Free Trade Agreement (EFTA) member countries - Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Iceland and Norway - came into force in July last year. Having joined the Central European Free Trade Agreement (CEFTA) on 1 January this year, an agreement on Slovenia's entry to CEFTA on the basis of the regulation of the temporary use of this agreement came into force instead of the individual bilateral agreements, which Slovenia used in trade with some CEFTA members (the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary). On 1 August 1996, a free trade agreement with Latvia came into force; in September 1996, Slovenia also concluded a free trade agreement with Macedonia. On 1 January 1997, free trade agreements with Estonia and Bulgaria will start to be used, whereas the agreement with Lithuania, which was signed by Slovenia on 4th October, has not been ratified by the Baltic country yet. In the following year, free trade zone will most probably also be established with Rumania - with the agreement of Rumania's entry into CEFTA - and Israel, with which an agreement is to be signed at the beginning of the next year. The negotiations to establish a free trade zone with Croatia started in November on the expert level.

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