Europäischer Wirtschaftsraum, EWR#
European Economic Area, EEA, the largest common market in the world which accounts for 40% of world trade. It entered into effect on January 1, 1994, and comprised the 12 member states of the European Union (Belgium, Denmark, Germany, France, Greece, United Kingdom, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, and Spain) as well as 6 member states of the 7-state European Free Trade Association (EFTA; Finland, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Austria, Norway, and Sweden) with a total population of 370 million. Switzerland was the only EFTA country not to join the EEA. The objective of the EEA is to effectuate the free movement of goods, persons, services and capital and cooperation on environmental and educational issues as well as in the field of research and development etc.