The EFTA Surveillance Authority (ESA) monitors compliance with the Agreement on the European Economic Area (EEA Agreement) in Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, enabling those States to participate in the Internal Market of the European Union.

Legal officer at ESA - Energy Sector

ESA is an international organisation, independent of the States, which safeguards the rights of individuals and undertakings under the EEA Agreement, ensuring free movement, fair competition and control of state aid. ESA's work helps remove barriers to trade and open up new opportunities to over 500 million Europeans, creating jobs and growth and adding to the international competitiveness of the States.

ESA is based in Brussels. It currently employs 75 staff members of 16 nationalities.  ESA is led by a College consisting of three members, each appointed for a period of four years by the three participating EFTA States.

Legal officer, Energy Sector - Job Reference 05/2018

Role Description

ESA is recruiting a legal officer responsible for Energy to join its Internal Market Affairs Directorate (IMA). IMA is responsible for monitoring the EEA EFTA States to ensure that they comply with their obligations in the field of internal market law. The successful candidate will be assigned responsibility for general surveillance work and case handling regarding the implementation and application of EEA law. Day to day tasks include the examination of complaints, legal conformity assessments, drafting of decisions, opinions and reports.

For this particular vacancy, we are looking for candidates with in depth experience of dealing with EEA energy law and EU energy policy and legislation. As many of the cases in the energy field involve Norway, knowledge of the Norwegian language, legal system, economy and national administration would be an added benefit. Depending on workload and other requirements, the responsibilities may also cover other general or specific issues relating to EEA law.  We are looking for a well-qualified candidate with ideally 5 years’ or more relevant experience from the public and/or private sector.

The following are essential:

  • University degree in law, or recognised equivalent qualification in law
  • Ideally 5 years’ or more relevant professional experience in the private or the public sector
  • Very good knowledge of EEA energy law as well as the legal framework of EU/EEA Internal Market law
  • Excellent command of written and spoken English (ESA’s working language) as well as proven legal drafting ability
  • Excellent organisational, analytical, interpersonal and communication skills
  • Initiative and the ability to work both independently and in a team in an international environment

The following are desirable:

  • In-depth knowledge of Norwegian law and understanding of the Norwegian administration as well as the legal system and economy of Norway
  • Postgraduate degree in EU/EEA law
  • Knowledge of and familiarity with the functioning of the Agreement on the European Economic Area, and of the EEA EFTA States
  • Relevant professional experience involving the EU institutions, relevant national authorities or administrations
  • Working knowledge of Norwegian, Icelandic or German
  • Familiarity with the legal orders of Iceland


This position will be filled in accordance with ESA’s policy on Recruitment Policy available at:  Former ESA staff members are eligible to apply provided the closing date is at least three years after their departure date. In exceptional circumstances, this requirement may be waived. The three-year requirement does not apply in the case of applications from current or former ESA temporary staff, trainees and seconded national experts. Current and former EFTA Secretariat and EFTA Court staff may apply for positions in ESA at any time.

The position is placed at grade A4 of ESA’s salary scale, the precise step being determined depending on the relevant experience of the successful candidate, with a likely starting salary of between €92 000 and €99 000 per annum. Depending on personal situation and family status, additional allowances and benefits may apply. Tax conditions are favourable.

Type and duration of appointment: fixed-term contract of three years, renewable for a further three years if desirable and in the interest of ESA.  Applicants must be nationals of the States party to the EEA Agreement (EU 28 + EEA EFTA 3). 

ESA actively seeks to promote a healthy work/life balance and a working environment allowing its staff members to develop their professional skills and interests.

Application process:

  • All applications must be made online at:
  • Deadline for applications: 8 April 2018
  • Interviews: week commencing 23 April 2018
  • Start date: September 2018 or earlier if possible

Applications submitted in response to this vacancy notice may also be taken into account for the purpose of filling other vacancies arising for similar positions within ESA. 

Questions regarding the post may be addressed to Gunnar Thor, Director IMA, on +32 (0)2 286 1873 /

Questions regarding the recruitment process may be addressed to Emma Thomas, HR Officer on +32 (0)2 286 1832 /