Agreement on the European Economic Area


Decision 94/1/EC, ECSC on the conclusion of the agreement on the European Economic Area

Agreement on the European Economic Area





Joint bodies

The agreement created several joint EEA bodies which largely mirror EU institutions:

In addition:

How does EU legislation become EEA legislation?

Participation in EU programmes and agencies

Financial aspects

Under the agreement, the EFTA members contribute towards reducing economic and social disparities between EEA regions — 16 EU countries currently benefit. These EEA grants are jointly financed by Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, each contributing according to their size and wealth.

In addition to the 3 EFTA countries’ contributions to EU programme operating costs, they pay towards the Commission’s administrative costs (e.g. office space, meetings, etc.).


The EEA agreement was signed in 1992 between the then 12 EU countries and 6 EFTA countries: Austria, Finland, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland, although Switzerland later chose to reject the agreement. It entered into force in 1994. In 1995, 3 of the EFTA countries (Austria, Finland and Sweden) joined the EU. The agreement has been progressively adapted to take account of the accession of 10 countries to EU membership in 2004, of a further 2 in 2007, and lastly, of Croatia in 2013.

For more information, see:


Decision 94/1/EC, ECSC of the Council and the Commission of 13 December 1993 on the conclusion of the Agreement on the European Economic Area between the European Communities, their Member States and the Republic of Austria, the Republic of Finland, the Republic of Iceland, the Principality of Liechtenstein, the Kingdom of Norway, the Kingdom of Sweden and the Swiss Confederation (OJ L 1, 3.1.1994, p. 1)

Agreement on the European Economic Area — Final Act — Joint Declarations - Declarations by the Governments of the Member States of the Community and the EFTA States — Arrangements — Agreed Minutes — Declarations by one or several of the Contracting Parties of the Agreement on the European Economic Area (OJ L 1, 3.1.1994, pp. 3-522)

Successive amendments to the agreement have been incorporated in the basic text. This consolidated version is of documentary value only.

last update 24.05.2016

(1) The United Kingdom withdraws from the European Union and becomes a third country (non-EU country) as of 1 February 2020.