The European Parliament approves EU agreements with Norway
The European Parliament gives the green light to amending the EU agreements with Norway on fisheries and EEA funds.
The agreement on European Economic Agreement (EEA) funds was signed by Norway and the EU in May last year. The agreement covers the period from 2014 to 2021, meaning that 15 countries will receive a total of € 2.8 billion from Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein.
Norway pays the lion’s share
Norway accounts for 97 per cent of the money, which largely refers to measures for social and economic equalization.
The European Parliament Thursday approved both this agreement and the EU’s updated fisheries agreements with Norway and Iceland. The decision was made with 570 is support of the agreement, 38 against and 23 abstained votes.
When the agreements were discussed in plenary in the European Parliament on Wednesday, the EU Commission was strongly criticized for not having the European Parliament involved properly in the negotiation phase with Norway.
EU commissioner of agriculture, Phil Hogan, accepts the blame for this.
– There was a misunderstanding, and it will not happen again, says Hogan.
Toll barrier on cheese and meat
At the same time, several parliamentarians expressed strong dissatisfaction with Norwegian import tolls on cheese and meat. The previous Government hiked the tolls on these consumables. Despite being against the increases in opposition, the current Government has failed to decrease them.
In addition, Norway was criticized for its tough line in the dispute about crab fishing around Svalbard. A Latvian ship was arrested earlier this year for what Norway claims to be illegal fishing.
© NTB Scanpix / Norway Today