Member of the European Parliament Marietje Schaake welcomes the Trade Committee's vote in favour of ratifying CETA, the trade agreement with Canada. Schaake: "CETA is the most modern and progressive agreement that the EU has ever negotiated. We need to make sure that this agreement with the liberal Trudeau government comes into effect as soon as possible. President Trump has announced measures that will have large effects for Canada. The EU and Canada must work together to strengthen the multilateral system."
CETA strengthens economic cooperation between the EU and Canada and will create opportunities for European businesses in Canada, Schaake: "Tariffs will be removed and procedures will be simplified and more predictable. Europeans will be able to bid for more Canadian public contracts, which is a crucial benefit. The Canadian economy is bigger than the Russian economy and a of great importance for Europe. Together with the Canadians, we can work to strengthen the global rules-based trade system and promote high standards worldwide."
Investment protection was one of the hurdles during the negotiations, but the European Commission has designed a completely new system under pressure from the European Parliament. Schaake: "Canada and the EU have made major improvements to investment protection within CETA to make it fairer and more transparent. We do not want secret courts. The biggest problem is that EU member states still have 1,300 treaties with the old-style ISDS in them. These need to be reformed. Together with the Canadians and other international partners, we must work on a multilateral investment court, using the model of the World Trade Organisation as a basis. CETA is a step in that direction."
Now that CETA has been approved by the Trade Committee, the plenary of the European Parliament in Strasbourg will need to vote on it.