Motion for a resolution - B8-0146/2017Motion for a resolution

MOTION FOR A RESOLUTION on conclusion of the EU-Canada CETA

8.2.2017 - (2017/2525(RSP))

to wind up the debate on the statement by the Commission
pursuant to Rule 123(2) of the Rules of Procedure

Manfred Weber, Artis Pabriks, Daniel Caspary, Salvatore Cicu, Christofer Fjellner, Danuta Maria Hübner, Franck Proust, Godelieve Quisthoudt-Rowohl, Viviane Reding, Fernando Ruas, Tokia Saïfi, José Ignacio Salafranca Sánchez-Neyra, Jarosław Wałęsa, Hermann Winkler on behalf of the PPE Group
David Campbell Bannerman, Emma McClarkin, Sander Loones, Jan Zahradil, Joachim Starbatty, Anna Elżbieta Fotyga on behalf of the ECR Group
Guy Verhofstadt, Marietje Schaake, Ramon Tremosa i Balcells, Hannu Takkula, Dita Charanzová, Frédérique Ries, Johannes Cornelis van Baalen, Sylvie Goulard, Morten Løkkegaard, Alexander Graf Lambsdorff, Fredrick Federley, Nils Torvalds, Angelika Mlinar, Hilde Vautmans, Gesine Meissner, Cecilia Wikström, Sophia in ‘t Veld, Petras Auštrevičius, Jozo Radoš on behalf of the ALDE Group

Procedure : 2017/2525(RSP)
Document stages in plenary
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European Parliament resolution on conclusion of the EU-Canada CETA


The European Parliament,

–  having regard to the treaty on the Functioning of the European Union,

–  having regard to the negotiating directives of 24 April 2009 issued by the Council of the European Union, as well as the Recommendation from the Commission to the Council of 20 December 2010 on the modification of the negotiating directives and the subsequent modification by the Council of 14 July 2011,

–  having regard to its resolution of 8 June 2011 on EU-Canada trade relations[1],

–  having regard to the legal opinion 259/16 from the Legal Service of the European Parliament of 1 June 2016 on the compatibility with the Treaties of investment dispute settlement provisions in trade agreements negotiated by the European Union, with reference in particular to CETA,

–  having regard to the proposal from the Commission to the Council of 5 July 2016 on the signature and conclusion of CETA as a ‘mixed’ agreement,

–  having regard to the Council Decision of 5 October 2016 on the provisional application of CETA,

–  having regard to the EU-Canada Joint Interpretative Instrument on CETA approved by the Council at the moment of signature on 28 October 2016, which would provide a binding interpretation of CETA pursuant to Article 31 of the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties,

–  having regard to the 38 Statements and Declarations entered into the Council minutes on the occasion of the adoption by the Council of the decision authorising the signature of CETA,

–  having regard to Rule 123(2) of its Rules of Procedure,

A.  whereas good trade agreements, setting clear rules for trade and investment flows, must shape global standards in order to provide benefits for citizens through jobs and growth for our economy and to help sustain a prosperous future;

B.  whereas at a time when multilateral trade agreements are difficult to achieve, bilateral agreements play an important role in the generation of economic growth and employment;

C.  whereas the EU must work together with like-minded countries to strengthen the global rules-based system, especially since the multilateral system is increasingly under pressure;

D.  whereas Canada and the EU are crucial partners and allies, with shared values and a common belief in open, democratic, liberal societies and the importance of rules-based trade, and agree on intensifying their multilateral and bilateral foreign policy cooperation;

E.  whereas CETA is the most modern, progressive and extensive trade agreement that the EU has negotiated so far;

F.  whereas the priorities set out in its resolution of 8 June 2011 are reflected in the outcome of the negotiations;

G.  whereas CETA negotiations started in 2009 on the basis of a unanimous mandate from all Member States;

H.  whereas CETA allows for access to new markets, wider consumer choices and investment opportunities, while at the same time safeguarding high standards both in Canada and the EU, minimising unnecessary barriers to trade and ensuring the right to regulate in the pursuit of legitimate public policy objectives;

I.  whereas, amongst other things, CETA eliminates tariffs, gives European companies access to the Canadian public procurement market, protects 145 European Geographical Indications and improves transparency in administrative and customs procedures;

J.  whereas CETA can further develop international labour and environmental standards, in particular by setting rules governing sustainable development and climate protection;

K.  whereas, following the concerns raised by civil society and the European Parliament about investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS), the Parties agreed to remove it from the text and replace it by a new model for investment dispute resolution – the ICS (investment court system);

L.  whereas CETA negotiations have contributed significantly towards visa liberalisation for citizens of Romania and Bulgaria;

M.  whereas CETA negotiations have shown that a more inclusive process can deliver better results, leading to important conclusions about the need for enhanced transparency in trade negotiations in general,

1.  Welcomes the Comprehensive and Economic Trade Agreement with Canada as the most modern, extensive and ambitious trade agreement the EU has negotiated so far, which has the potential to create significant benefits for citizens and companies, especially small and medium-sized enterprises;

2.  Calls for a swift ratification process by Member States’ national and regional parliaments to ensure that European and Canadian citizens experience the benefits of CETA as soon as possible;

3.  Stresses the fact that this agreement is an opportunity to set the rules and standards for global trade together with our strongest partner, ensuring that social, labour and environmental standards are not jeopardised when setting the conditions for growth and jobs;

4.  Believes that CETA sends an important signal to other trading partners concerning how the EU would like to set global rules and standards and that the EU remains committed to open markets and rules-based trade, especially at a time of uncertainty in the field of trade policy;

5.  Stresses that, as is the case with CETA, all future trade agreements should include appropriate measures for sensitive products, including agricultural goods, as well as safeguard clauses that have to be applied in the event of market disruptions;

6.  Recalls that CETA does not require governments to privatise any public services, nor does it prevent services which had previously been privatised being brought back under public ownership, administration or any other form of control;

7.  Welcomes the new Commission model for investment dispute resolution – the ICS – which represents a fundamental change as compared to ISDS by ensuring the establishment of a permanent tribunal with public judges randomly allocated for each case, a permanent appellate tribunal, strict rules on conflict of interest, a code of conduct enforceable by the President of the International Court of Justice and enhanced transparency provisions so that disputes will no longer be solved ‘behind closed doors’;

8.  Welcomes the fact that questions on CETA have been answered by outreach, engagement and other clarifications concerning the content of the Agreement, such as the Joint Interpretative Instrument, by the EU and Canada;

9.  Underlines the importance of trade and sustainable development in CETA, and the relevant commitments taken by the Parties in the joint interpretative instrument to reinforce its provisions;

10.  Calls for the full involvement of Parliament in the implementation of the Agreement and calls on the Commission to regularly update Parliament on its provisional application;

11.  Calls on the Commission to increase the transparency of ongoing and future trade negotiations in order to engage with citizens and stakeholders;

12.  Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Commission, the Council of the European Union, the governments and the Parliaments of the Member States, and the Government and Parliament of Canada.