Štefan Füle, the European Commissioner for Enlargement, said at a press conference in Brussels yesterday that he hopes that all chapters of Iceland’s accession negotiation with the European Union can be opened by the end of this year.
The European Central Bank. Photo by Páll Stefánsson.
The fourth Iceland-EU summit takes place today, during which four negotiation chapters will open: on energy, competition on the market, foreign affairs, safety and defense issues, and consumer and public health protection, Fréttablaðið reports.
Talks on the last two have already been concluded, given that Iceland shares the EU’s basic values on human rights and peaceful solutions to struggles, as stated in a press release from the Icelandic Ministry for Foreign Affairs.
A special declaration regarding Iceland’s status as a military-less country, which will be part of Iceland’s accession agreement, will be presented during the summit.
In the talks on energy, Iceland emphasizes that EU membership is not to affect the current arrangement on ownership of energy resources; the 194th article of the Lisbon treaty gives member nations the right to control their own energy resources.
In the chapter on competition in the market, Iceland reveals its intention to maintain state monopoly on the sale of alcohol and tobacco and to guarantee the continued presence of a public social housing financing fund.
The Iceland-EU accession talks concerns 33 chapters on various legislations. Fifteen of these chapters have been opened and negotiations of ten thereof been closed.
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