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CANADA'S TRADE AGREEMENTS

Canada has trade relations with 224 countries and territories, with which it trades more than 5,500 products and services. in 2019, Canada imported USD 453.1 Billion in goods and exported USD 446.5 Billion according to data from Statistics Canada.

THE CANADA-EUROPEAN UNION COMPREHENSIVE ECONOMIC AND TRADE AGREEMENT

AGREEMENT OVERVIEW

The Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (“CETA”) is one of Canada's most ambitious trade initiatives. It sets new standards intended to eliminate or reduce barriers in the trade of goods and services (tariff and non-tariff), the making of investments, the participation in government procurement processes, the achievement of product standards, and attaining professional certification, as well as in other areas such as labour and the environment. This landmark agreement was signed on October 30, 2016 and entered into force on September 21, 2017

The EU is the world’s second largest economy and Canada’s second largest trading partner after the United States. It is also the world’s second largest importing market for goods. The EU’s annual imports alone are worth more than Canada’s GDP. Preferential access to this large, dynamic market offers tremendous opportunities and a real competitive edge for Canada.

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What does CETA covers?

CETA covers virtually all sectors and aspects of Canada-EU trade in order to eliminate or reduce barriers. CETA addresses everything from tariffs to product standards, investment, professional certification and many other areas of activity. The agreement’s broad scope—including improved access to EU markets for goods and services; greater certainty, transparency, and protection for investments; and new opportunities in EU procurement markets—translates into real benefits for Canadians and contributes to Canada’s long-term prosperity.

Trade in goods

Prior to CETA’s entry into force, only 25 percent of EU tariff lines on Canadian goods were duty-free. On the day that CETA entered into force, 98 percent of EU tariff lines became duty-free for Canadian goods, and an additional one percent will be eliminated over a seven-year phase out period. Tariff elimination will provide enhanced export opportunities into the EU market for Canadian producers, processors, and manufacturers, as well as for agricultural and agri-food products, fish and seafood, forestry goods, and the full range of industrial goods.

Rules of origin

Canadian exporters have clear and favourable rules that take into consideration Canada’s supply chains, in order to determine which goods are considered “made in Canada” and therefore eligible for preferential tariff treatment.

Customs and trade facilitation

Canada and the EU share a desire to keep customs procedures simple, effective, clear, and predictable so as to reduce processing times at the border and make the movement of goods cheaper, faster, more predictable and efficient.

Regulatory cooperation and conformity assessment

CETA helps to ensure that unnecessary or discriminatory regulatory requirements do not diminish the value of new market access to the EU. Cooperation and information sharing between Canadian and EU regulators result in more compatible regulatory measures that could make it easier for Canadians to do business in the EU.

Government procurement

Canadian companies can bid on opportunities at all levels of the EU government procurement market, which is worth an estimated $3.3 trillion annually.

Trade in services and labour mobility

Canadian service providers have more business opportunities in the EU. Furthermore, CETA makes it easier for certain skilled professionals to work temporarily in the EU.

Investment

Investment provisions in CETA are designed to give investors greater certainty, stability, and protection for their investments and to secure access to each other’s respective market.

Sustainable development, labour, and the environment

CETA includes clear commitments to uphold Canada’s high standards and not to undermine them for commercial gain. Clear language confirms the right to regulate for all levels of governments.

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