Canada and EU conclude negotiations on free trade deal

18 October 2013 17:20  [Source: ICIS news]

TORONTO (ICIS)--Canada and the EU on Friday concluded negotiations on a free trade agreement.

The “in principle agreement” covers trade in goods and services, investment and government procurement. It also “grants the flexibility” to include regulatory cooperation, Canada’s government said in a statement. A formal agreement has yet to be signed.

The government highlighted Canada’s chemicals and plastics manufacturing sector as one of the agreement’s beneficiaries.

Canada’s chemical producers’ trade group, Chemistry Industry Association of Canada (CIAC), said that it “commends” the government’s work on the trade deal, which would improve access for Canadian chemicals and other products to the 28 member-state EU.

The government of Canada's oil-rich Alberta province also said it welcomed the deal.

Alberta is actively participating in the remaining negotiations to ensure our key interests continue to be addressed,” Premier Alison Redford said. Alberta is worried that EU rules may discriminate against its oil sands-derived fuels.

Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper said that the agreement was "a historic win for Canada".

"It represents thousands of new jobs for Canadians and a half-billion new customers for Canadian businesses," Harper said.

Canada would, in a next step, seek to conclude a formal trade agreement with the EU, he added.

By: Stefan Baumgarten
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