The EPP Group has welcomed the successful finalisation of the modifications of the EU-Canada Trade Agreement (CETA) announced today by both sides' Chief Negotiators. The European Parliament Rapporteur on the Agreement, Artis Pabriks MEP, commended the announcement and has called for speedy ratification: "This is the last sprint of a six-year-long marathon of negotiations to put in place the biggest trade agreement ever sealed by the EU. With today's announcement, the European Commission has fulfilled the mandate previously given by the European Parliament. On top of that, it delivered the most modern and ambitious agreement on the Investment Chapter reached so far in EU trade negotiations. As Standing Rapporteur for CETA, I am ready to do everything necessary to start the ratification process from the European Parliament's side as soon as possible."
Today's announcement responds to public concerns to further strengthen the government's right to regulate, and it has been agreed that cases would be addressed in a new transparent and institutionalised dispute settlement tribunal. Equally, an agreement has been reached on the appeal mechanism. Furthermore, the EU and Canada have both shown their desire to improve the investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) system in the future by working together on the new Commission proposal to establish a multilateral investment tribunal.
"Perfection is never simple which is why, on the basis of what has been agreed, we will work to achieve what we all want: opportunities, jobs and economic growth. The EPP Group supports the agreement and will work on its speedy ratification. We call on all political groups to act responsibly and to remember that this trade agreement provides the possibility to review it after ratification, if both sides deem it necessary to further improve some of its elements. So, let's turn it into reality and enjoy the benefits of the first comprehensive trade agreement with a like-minded partner", added EPP Group Spokesman in Parliament's International Trade Committee, Daniel Caspary MEP.
Pabriks stressed the importance of the CETA Agreement: "This is a modern, comprehensive and balanced trade agreement which is much needed for the EU's economy and European enterprises, particularly our SMEs. The sooner we ratify it, the sooner we will benefit from it. CETA is expected to increase the bilateral trade in goods and services by 22.9%. It is estimated that the EU-Canada trade deal will lead to GDP gains of up to €11.6 billion per year for the EU", he concluded.
The EPP Group is the largest political group in the European Parliament with 216 Members from 27 Member States
The European Commission now needs to finalise the translations on the Investement Chapter and then send the CETA Agreement to the Council for signature before the agreement can officially come to the European Parliament.
In August 2014, the European Union and Canada concluded negotiations on a modern and comprehensive trade agreement which should bolster economies on both sides of the Atlantic and provide our societies with better prospects for economic growth, sustainable development and well-being.