The Central European Free Trade Agreement (CEFTA) was established in 1992 between the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, and Poland as a regional trade agreement aimed at promoting free trade in the region. Since then, several other countries have joined the agreement, expanding CEFTA`s scope and reach.
As of 2021, the members of CEFTA include Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Moldova, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Serbia, and the original four countries that created the agreement. The agreement has played a crucial role in promoting economic growth and stability in the region by removing trade barriers and creating opportunities for businesses to expand and thrive.
CEFTA members enjoy several benefits, including duty-free access to each other`s markets, simplified rules of origin, and improved investment protection. This has led to an increase in trade among CEFTA members, with intra-regional trade growing significantly over the past few years.
One of the primary goals of CEFTA is to promote economic integration and cooperation among its members. This has been achieved through the establishment of a joint committee, which meets regularly to monitor the implementation of the agreement and to discuss any issues or concerns that may arise.
CEFTA has also played a significant role in promoting European integration by creating an environment that encourages trade and cooperation between non-EU member states. This has helped to reduce the gap between EU and non-EU countries, paving the way for closer ties and greater economic growth in the region.
In conclusion, the Central European Free Trade Agreement is a vital regional trade agreement that has played a significant role in promoting economic growth and stability in Central Europe. The agreement has expanded over the years, with several countries joining and benefiting from its provisions. By promoting economic integration and cooperation, CEFTA has helped to bring the region closer together and create new opportunities for businesses to thrive.