CETA: Conservatives welcome agreement but regret delay

27-Oct-2016 @ 13:30

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CETA: Conservatives welcome agreement but regret delay

Responding to the news that the Belgian government has finally reached an agreement on the CETA EU-Canada trade deal, Conservative International Trade joint spokesman Emma McClarkin MEP said: "It makes you wonder why they dragged this out so long. Justin Trudeau could have been in Brussels signing this agreement today with fanfare. Instead he has cancelled his trip with a bad taste in his mouth.

"The credibility of the EU on global trade deals is in tatters following this debacle. CETA is one of the highest quality agreements ever negotiated, with a country that has values and standards very similar to our own. Other countries will now ask whether it is worth the time and effort conducting such deals with the EU. We need to show them that the EU can be a reliable trade partner."

Her fellow joint spokesman David Campbell Bannerman MEP said an excellent trade deal had almost been lost.

He added: "It is clear that a great deal more time needs to be spent listening to concerns in different member states, and in trying to overcome them. CETA will eliminate 99 percent of tariffs between the EU and Canada, save EU exporters 500 million euros a year and increase trade by 20 percent.

"It, and the benefits it will bring to the economies across the EU, are worth fighting for."

Conservative MEP and leader of the European Conservatives and Reformists Group Syed Kamall said: "Finally, the Walloon parliament has backed down and, in true European fashion, found a deal at one minute past midnight.

"We all need to learn the lessons from this debacle, not least that it is incumbent on all supporters of open trade to go out and make a positive case for the benefits of it."

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