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Ministry for Foreign Affairs

2/3rd of negotiating chapters opened

Frá upphafi ríkjaráðstefnunnar í morgun
Frá upphafi ríkjaráðstefnunnar í morgun

Negotiations on three chapters were launched this morning in Iceland's accession talks with the European Union at an Intergovernmental Conference (IGC) in Brussels. The chapters opened are on Financial Services, Statistics and Customs Union. Further talks will now commence. A total of 21 chapters have now been opened out of 33, approximately 2/3rd of the negotiating chapters. Out of those chapters opened a total of 10 have been provisionally closed.
 
Chapter 9 on Financial Services is part of the EEA Agreement. In Iceland's negotiation position Iceland details that it implements and enforces the acquis under Chapter 9 and that the institutional capacity and structures are in place for continuing implementation. Important measures which have been taken to improve the administrative capacity and quality of financial services supervision following the financial crisis, and further reforms which are on-going are mentioned. Iceland requests that one public national entity (Viðlagatrygging Íslands, a natural catastrophe insurance provider) will be excluded from the Solvency IIDirective as the scope of the Directive would be too inflictive for the body. The negotiating position also refers to possible macro-prudential tools as Iceland lifts the current capital controls imposed. The lifting of the controls will be discussed under chapter 4 on free movement of capital.
 
Chapter 18 on Statistics is part of the EEA Agreement. Iceland, in its negotiating position puts emphasis  on maintaining its special solutions which have been negotiated under the EEA Agreement. Iceland requests not to deliver statistics on the carriage of goods by road, to not perform the survey on continuous vocational training and not to deliver backward data as regards some specific regulations. Iceland requests that the state's small size is taken into account as regards statistical aspects such as timeliness, frequency, level of detail and precision.  Iceland, furthermore requests a transitional period until 31 December 2016 to finalize the implementation of the tasks identified in the action plan annexed to the negotiating position.
 
Concerning Chapter 29 on the Customs Union,  Icelandic legislation is largely in line with the acqui, despite not being part of the EEA agreement. Two working groups which have already been established will deliver action plans on legislative alignment and design and set-up of necessary IT systems. Iceland requests that the chapter will only be provisionally closed when custom related issues have been addressed in Chapter 11 on Agriculture and Chapter 30 on External Relations. Iceland also reserves the right to return to the tariff issue in this chapter in that context.

The next IGC is scheduled to take place in December, the last one under the Cyprus presidency.

Chief Negotiator Jóhannesson's address
Iceland´s Negotiating Position: chapter 9, chapter 18 and chapter 29
Council's press release on the IGC

All further information on Iceland's application process can be found on the Negotiation's website

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