The devil is in the details

The ink is still drying on a comprehensive trade deal between Canada and the European Union said to be worth billions.

As we celebrate Small Business Week here,  the ink is still drying on a comprehensive trade deal between Canada and the European Union said to be worth billions.

The Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) is intended to generate substantial new trade in goods and services as well as give greater access for foreign investment. Once completely implemented (by 2015), it is estimated the agreement will increase bilateral trade in goods and services by 22.9 per cent (or 25.7 billion euros) and substantially boost Europe’s and Canada’s GDP.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper and European Union President José Manuel Barroso announced the agreement earlier this month and it is expected to affect just about every aspect of the Canadian economy — both positively and negatively.

Last year Canada ranked 12th on the list of the EU’s most important trading partners. For us, the EU is our second most important trade partner behind the U.S.

Statistics show trade in goods between the two to be about even at around 25 billion euros, however, trade in services is about 10 billion euros for EI imports versus about 17 billion euros for exports.

Of course as is usually the case for Canadian trade agreements, the deal appears to be a win-win for our partner.

Key elements for the trade agreement includes the elimination of duties for both sides, and industrial tariffs (EU exports will be almost immediately relieved of the costs of paying tariffs when selling goods on the Canadian market estimated at $700 million Canadian per year) and the elimination of agriculture tariffs (which will hurt the dairy industry in Canada and the beef, pork and sweet corn industries for Europe but also give us greater access to European wines).

One of the more worrisome aspects of the deal could be the elimination of duties relating to fisheries and expressed intent to allow more access to Canadian fish for the EU processing industry.

In the automotive sector, Canada will now recognize a list of EU car standards making it easier for the EU to exports cars to Canada.

One of the many positive aspects of the deal is that the EU and Canada have committed to sustainable development.

Some sectors expected to take a hit in Canada include the dairy industry, as well as the pharmaceutical industry because drug companies will get longer protection for their patents, meaning lower cost generics won’t be available as early in Canada.

Harper said he will be considering a federal compensation program for industries impacted by the agreement. The CETA is another signal from Harper of his intention to increase Canada’s presence in the global economy and lessen our reliance on our neighbours to the south.

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Sandi Griffiths is the region’s new district manager of transportation for the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
New MOTI district manager takes the wheel in Williams Lake

Sandi Griffiths replaces Todd Hubner who retired recently

Mclean Silverton rides a rail in Boitanio Park - one of seven new features installed by the city this past week. (Greg Sabatino photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Snow park in Boitanio open for riding

If any users find that the park requires attention, please contact city hall at 250-392-2311

A snowfall warning has been issued for Williams Lake and Quesnel. (Black Press Media)
Snowfall warning issued for Cariboo region

Between 10 to 15 cm expected

Community Volunteer Income Tax Program (CVITP) co-ordinator Surinderpal Rathor (from left) Judy Gibbons and Rajneesh Khugsal, seen here in 2020, are all ready to help people file their taxes. (Patrick Davies photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Williams Lake volunteers ready to offer community income tax program

Co-ordinator Surinderpal Rathor said he has already received inquiries

Women’s Contact Society community liaison Eileen Alberton with her dogs Luigi, left, and Sami enjoys a daily walk in Big Lake. (Photo submitted)
Women’s wellness focus of International Women’s Day events in Williams Lake

In its third year, the event will be offered virtually

Abbotsford’s Kris Collins turned to TikTok out of boredom when the provincial COVID-19 lockdown began in March 2020. She now has over 23 million followers on the video app. Photo: Submitted
Internet famous: Abbotsford’s Kris Collins is a TikTok comedy queen

Collins has found surprise stardom alone with a phone

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A Vancouver restaurant owner was found guilty of violating B.C.’s Human Rights Code by discriminating against customers on the basis of their race. (Pixabay)
Vancouver restaurant owner ordered to pay $4,000 to customers after racist remark

Referring to patrons as ‘you Arabs’ constitutes discrimination under B.C.’s Human Rights Code, ruling deems

Nanaimo children’s author and illustrator Lindsay Ford’s latest book is ‘Science Girl.’ (Photo courtesy Lindsay Ford)
B.C. children’s writer encourages girls to pursue the sciences in new book

Lindsay Ford is holding a virtual launch for latest book, ‘Science Girl’

Pig races at the 145th annual Chilliwack Fair on Aug. 12, 2017. Monday, March 1, 2021 is Pig Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Feb. 28 to March 6

Pig Day, Canadian Bacon Day and Grammar Day are all coming up this week

Staff from the Marine Mammal Rescue Centre, passersby, RCMP and Nanaimo Fire Rescue carried a sick 300-kilogram steller sea lion up the steep bluff at Invermere Beach in north Nanaimo in an attempt to save the animal’s life Thursday. (Photo courtesy Marine Mammal Rescue Centre)
300-kilogram sea lion muscled up from B.C. beach in rescue attempt

Animal dies despite efforts of Nanaimo marine mammal rescue team, emergency personnel and bystanders

Doctors and counsellors warn of an increase in panic attacks, anxiety, depression and suicide ideas between ages 10 to 14, in Campbell River. ( Black Press file photo)
Extended pandemic feeding the anxieties of B.C.’s youth

Parents not sure what to do, urged to reach out for help

Kara Sorensen, diagnosed with lung cancer in July, says it’s important for people to view her as healthy and vibrant, rather than sick. (Photo courtesy of Karen Sorensen)
B.C. woman must seek treatment overseas for inoperable lung cancer

Fundraising page launched on Karen Sorensen’s behalf, with a goal of $250,000

Gina Adams as she works on her latest piece titled ‘Undying Love’. (Submitted photo)
‘Toothless’ the kitty inspires B.C. wood carver to break out the chainsaw

Inspired by plight of a toothless cat, Gina Adams offers proceeds from her artwork to help animals

Most Read