The European Services Industry Voice For International Trade And Investment Negotiations

About Us

Who We Are

The European Services Forum is a network of high-level representatives from the European services sector, that is committed to actively promoting the liberalisation of international trade in services.

The network’s main stake lies in the liberalisation of the services markets in connection to the WTO GATS negotiations and the EU bilateral trade negotiations.

With a membership of major European companies and European and national trade sector specific associations based in all 27 Member States across the EU, ESF has become a major voice of the European services sector representing more than 30% of total trade (goods and services) of the European Union.

ESF is now widely recognized among stakeholders as the voice of the European service industries. Improved services market access as well as the facilitation of cross-border services provision for European countries in third countries belong to the Forum’s main priorities. Over the past years, ESF’s work has allowed its members to efficiently promote their interests.

ESF Chair

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ESF Policy Committee Chairman

ESF Managing Director

Pascal Kerneis has served as Managing Director since ESF’s creation, in 1999. He is in charge of running the ESF Secretariat on a daily basis.

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ESF Members – From A to Z

See ESF Members’ page here (with direct links).

 

The full list of ESF members is here below:

  • Amfori
  • Apple
  • Architects’ Council of Europe –ACE
  • British Telecom Plc
  • BDO
  • Bureau International des Producteurs et Intermédiaires d’Assurances – BIPAR
  • BUSINESSEUROPE
  • BUSINESSEUROPE WTO Working Group
  • Business Software Alliance – BSA
  • Conseil des barreaux de la Communauté Européenne – CCBE
  • Danish Shipping
  • Deutsche Post DHL
  • DI – Confederation of Danish Industries
  • Digital Europe
  • EK – Confederation of Finnish Industries
  • EuroCommerce
  • European Banking Federation – FBE
  • European Broadcasting Union – EBU
  • European Community Shipowners’ Associations – ECSA
  • European Express Association – EEA
  • European Federation of Engineering and Consultancy Associations – EFCA
  • European Public Telecom Network – ETNO
  • FratiniVergano European Lawyers
  • General Council of the Bar of England & Wales
  • Google
  • Huawei Europe
  • IBM Europe, Middle East & Africa
  • Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW)
  • Insurance Europe
  • Irish Business and Employers’ Confederation – IBEC
  • Law Society of England & Wales
  • Le Groupe La Poste
  • Microsoft Corporation Europe
  • Mouvement des entreprises de France – MEDEF
  • Orange
  • PostEurop
  • Svenskt Näringsliv (Confederation of Swedish Enterprise)
  • TechUK
  • Telenor Group
  • TheCityUK
  • UPS
  • Vodafone
  • Zurich
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ESF members – Trade Associations

  • Amfori
  • Architects’ Council of Europe –AC
  • Bureau International des Producteurs et Intermédiaires d’Assurances – BIPAR
  • BUSINESSEUROPE
  • BUSINESSEUROPE WTO Working Group
  • Business Software Alliance – BSA
  • Conseil des barreaux de la Communauté Européenne – CCBE
  • Danish Shipping
  • DI – Confederation of Danish Industries
  • Digital Europe
  • EK – Confederation of Finnish Industries
  • EuroCommerce
  • European Banking Federation – FBE
  • European Broadcasting Union – EBU
  • European Community Shipowners’ Associations – ECSA
  • European Express Association – EEA
  • European Public Telecom Network – ETNO
  • General Council of the Bar of England & Wales
  • Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW)
  • Insurance Europe
  • Irish Business and Employers’ Confederation – IBEC
  • Law Society of England & Wales
  • Mouvement des entreprises de France – MEDEf
  • PostEurop
  • Svenskt Näringsliv (Confederation of Swedish Enterprise)
  • TechUK
  • TheCityUK
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ESF Members – Companies

  • Apple
  • BDO
  • BUSINESSEUROPE
  • Deutsche Post DHL
  • FratiniVergano European Lawyers
  • Google
  • Huawei Europe
  • IBM Europe, Middle East & Africa
  • Le Groupe La Poste
  • Microsoft Corporation Europe
  • Orange
  • Telenor Group
  • UPS
  • Vodafone
  • Zurich
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Global Services Coalitions

The various Coalitions of Service Industries listed below are gathered in the unformal Global Services Coalition (GSC), and adopt joint statements or communiqués on case by case basis. GSC also organises missions to Geneva to meet up with Ambassadors and negotiators of  WTO countries:

  • Australian Services Roundtable (ASR)
  • BusinessNZ (New Zealand)
  • Barbados Coalition of Services Industries (BCSI)
  • Canadian Services Coalition (CSC)
  • Japan Services Network (JSN)
  • TheCityUK
  • US Coalition of Service Industries (CSI)
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EU Institutions

European Commission

  • European Commission – DG Trade
  • EVP & European Commissioner for Trade Valdis Dombrovskis

European Parliament

  • European Parliament
  • European Parliament – International Trade Committee
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International Org. and National Gov.

International organisations

  • World Trade Organisation (WTO)
  • Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)

National governments / bodies

  • Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR)
  • Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade
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Best Policies From ESF

What We Do

What we do

You will find here the various Position Papers adopted by ESF since its inception in 1999, classified by year and month of publication.

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Position Papers

ESF has adopted a large number of position papers highlighting the interests of the European services industry with regard to international trade.

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All activities

You will find here reports on additional ESF activities.

(Work in Progress)

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WTO

The World Trade Organisation (WTO) was created in 1994 at the outcome of the Uruguay Round of negotiations of the General Agreement of Tariffs and Trade (GATT).

It is at that Ministerial Conference of Marrakesh that was created also the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS).

In this section we will look at the content of the GATS and of the WTO members commitments in trade in services, as well as to the content of the services negotiations that took place afterwards.

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TISA

The plurilateral negotiations for the Trade in Services Agreement (TiSA) went from 2012 to 2016, but failed in October/November 2016.

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Joint Statement Initiatives

At the 11th WTO Ministerial Conference in Buenos-Aires in Argentina in December 2017, in a gloomy atmosphere where no progress seemed possible at multilateral level, like-minded groups of WTO members issued joint statements on advancing discussions on e-commerce, on developing a multilateral framework on investment facilitation, on launching a working group on micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) and on advancing ongoing talks on domestic regulation in services trade.

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Bilateral Negotiations

The European Union concluded a considerable amount of Free Trade Agreements in the two last decades. Between 1999 and 2005, a moratorium prohibited the initiation of any new trade negotiations with EU third countries, giving priority to the multilateral level (WTO and Doha round negotiations). In 2005, the European Union decided that both multilateral and bilateral could be run in parallel.

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EU Ongoing Bilateral Negotiations

  • EU-Australia FTA
  • EU-Indonesia FTA
  • EU-India FTA
  • EU-Thailand FTA, etc.
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EU Free Trade Agreements

  • EU-Canada CETA
  • EU-Colombia, Peru and Ecuador (Andean)
  • EU-Japan EPA
  • EU-Singapore
  • EU-UK TCA, etc…
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The dimension of Services Trade

Trade in Services Statistics

Global Statistics

This Section will provide statistics on international trade in services.

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Sectoral Statistics

Countries Statistics

This section will reproduce the country specific statistics that are also posted in the various ESF webpages on the bilateral or multilateral negotiations. Most of the statistics have been updated in the course of 2023, although the Eurostat figures are not all available for the year 2022:

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Links

Latest News

News From ESF

ESF & EU Future Trade Policy

Ahead of the new EU Parliament and European Commission, please find here the ESF Position on EU Fut...

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GSC commends E-Commerce results

GSC commends negotiators’ work towards a positive outcome on the JSI on e-commerce and calls on m...

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GSC on JSI ECom

BUSINESS CALLS FOR AGREEMENT ON BAN ON CUSTOMS DUTIES ON ELECTRONIC TRANSMISSIONS IN E-COMMERCE ...

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