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ETPOA and the CDL sign their merger agreement

Members from the informal platform Comité de Liaison (CDL) and the European Trade Promotion Organisations’ Association (ETPOA) have gathered today in Brussels for the official Signing Ceremony of their merger agreement.

After a lot of time and common efforts, the two organisations finalised in July 2019 an agreement to merge, so CDL members will from January 2020 onwards join the ETPOA under a brand new Agrifood Promotion Committee (APC).  

In terms of the practical steps given to get here, 9 CDL members have applied to become members of ETPOA – plus 4 CDL members who were already ETPOA members. Their applications to join ETPOA, and the establishment of APC within the ETPOA, were yesterday unanimously approved by the ETPOA’s General Assembly. Following the official approval, members from both organisations gathered today in the premises of the Belgian Permanent Representation in Brussels where Tonia Van der Vyver, President of the ETPOA, and Tania Gesto Casás, Secretary General of the CDL, signed the agreement during an event attended by members of both organisations and representatives of the European Commission.

The 9 new members joining the ETPOA are:

  • Agrarmarkt Austria Marketing GesmbH (Austria)
  • AHDB – Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (UK)
  • Board Bia (Ireland)
  • BVE – Food and Drink Industries (Germany)
  • FIAB – Food and Drink Industries (Spain)
  • ITA – Italian Trade Agency (Italy)
  • SOPEXA (France)
  • Switzerland Global Enterprise (Switzerland)
  • VLAM – Vlaams Cenrtum Voor Agro-en Visser Marketing (Belgium)

This merger is a major step forward for the CDL, both in terms of capacity and collaboration. By joining the ETPOA, much wider in scope, the CDL – until now only an informal platform – acquires legal status, and this will for sure open up a range of opportunities that were so far beyond their reach.

As the same time, the ETPOA will increase their membership from 14 to 23 members and will cover 6 additional European countries (including Austria, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Switzerland and the United Kingdom).

The nine new members will bring along their thorough expertise in the key agri-food promotion sector, together with all their enthusiasm and dynamism to keep building on the excellent collaboration they have had so far, now also with their new ETPOA partners.


The CDL (Comité de Liaison) brings together major European stakeholders promoting the specificity of our food and wine industries throughout the world. The CDL is an informal EU platform where members can exchange best practices on food and wine promotion activities, and for a better positioning on European and third country markets.

ETPOA, the European Trade Promotion Organisations’ Association, was formed in 2018 at the initiative of twelve national trade promotion organizations (TPOs) in the European Union. The founders envision an association welcoming and including all TPOs from EU member states and other European countries, as well as other European stakeholders involved in Trade Promotion. TPOs play a key role in furthering EU economic development and growth through trade and they can boost their impact by working together and with all the relevant European institutions.

Brussels – 24th October 2019

28 October 2019