International Agreements in Progress: Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) with Canada

Briefing 20-01-2017

EU-Canada negotiations for a Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) started in May 2009 and were declared concluded at the EU-Canada Summit on 26 September 2014. The agreement's overall aim is to increase flows of goods, services and investment to the benefit of both partners. For the EU, CETA represents the first comprehensive economic agreement with a highly industrialised Western economy. Except for a few sensitive agricultural products, the agreement would remove practically all tariffs on goods exchanged between the two partners. Canada would substantially open up its public procurement at both federal and sub-federal level, thereby eliminating a major asymmetry in access to each other's public procurement markets. The EU succeeded in securing protection for a large number of European Geographical Indications (GIs) on the Canadian market. Provisions on sustainable development should ensure that trade and investment do not develop to the detriment of, but rather support, environmental protection and social development. CETA was signed by the EU and Canada on 30 October 2016. The Council decision on signature was only reached after difficult discussions, so that a total of 38 statements and declarations by Member States, the Commission and the Council, as well as a Joint Interpretative Instrument accompany that Council decision. The European Parliament has launched the consent procedure, with Artis Pabriks (EPP, Latvia) as rapporteur. The vote in the Committee on International Trade (INTA) is scheduled for 24 January 2017, and the vote in plenary for the February part-session in Strasbourg (13 to 16 February). Second edition. The ‘International Agreements in Progress’ briefings are updated at key stages throughout the process, from initial discussions through to ratification. To view earlier editions of this briefing, please see: PE 593.491, 26 October 2016.