In 2013 Prime Minister Stephen Harper and European Commission President José Manuel Barroso announced, in Brussels, that they have reached an agreement in principle on the Canada-EU Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA). Canada and the European Union completed negotiations on the CETA on September 16, 2014.
The agreement is the broadest trade negotiation ever undertaken by Canada covering a significant range of issues that include tariffs, non tariff barriers, services and investments, financial services, government procurement and much more.
When completely implemented, the CETA is expected to result in C$1.5 billion in new agri-food exports including $600 million in beef, $400 million in pork, $100 million in grains and oilseeds, $100 million in sugar containing products, and a further $300 million in processed foods, fruits and vegetables.
The agreement is undergoing legal scrubbing as well as translation. With this process completed and the agreement implemented, CETA will give Canadian exports access to one of the world’s largest trading block. In its implementation, the agreement is expected to eliminate 94 percent of existing tariff between Canada and the EU over a span of 7 years and increase two-way trade between the two markets by 23 percent.
With a population of over 507 million and a global import and export rate of 16.4 percent and 15.4 percent respectively, the European Union is one of the biggest export market globally. Combined, EU countries have a GDP of CND $ 21.1 trillion and a Gross National Product of CND $ 44,000.
As the fifth top-exporting nation globally, Canada stands to gain significantly from the implementation of CETA. More than 60 percent of the Canadian GDP is dependent on trade and the agricultural sector in 2014 accounted for 6.7 percent of the national GDP.
CAFTA supports the Canada-EU CETA. The CETA secures real and substantial access to one of the world’s few billion-dollar export markets, and does it ahead of our major competitors. Through the CETA, Canada has confirmed its support for farmers and food processors and Canada has let the world know that we are serious about trade.