By June 10, 2013 Read More →
Canada Unlikely to Sign Trade Deal with the EU This Week

Canada Unlikely to Sign Trade Deal with the EU This Week

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper heads to Europe tomorrow, June 11th, for an eight-day trip to France, the United Kingdom and Ireland. Canada and the EU have been negotiating a free trade deal since 2009, but talks have intensified considerably ahead of Mr Harpers trip. Trade negotiators from Canada have been in Brussels for over three weeks now after being ordered to extend their stay toward the end of May. Some in the media have commented that, because of upcoming negotiations between the US and the EU on the TTIP, Canada risks losing the EU’s attention if an agreement is not reached soon.

Reaching an FTA with the EU is part of Mr Harper’s strategy to diversify Canada’s trade relations and to become less reliant on the US. Mr Harper has concluded six trade agreements during his time in office, however none of these have been with major economies. At the moment, trade talks with Japan and India are also underway.

There are several outstanding issues which currently prevent an agreement from being reached. These include Canada’s access to European pork and beef markets, intellectual property laws and country-of-origin rules for vehicles. As a result, the Harper government has cautioned against expecting a lasting deal in the very near future.

Mr Harper’s trip to Europe will conclude with the G8 summit at Lough Erne Resort in Northern Ireland, which will take place between 17 – 18 June.

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(Wikimedia Commons image courtesy of joiseyshowaa.)

About the Author:

Sebastian Andrei is NABATAEANS’ editor for EU - Middle East Trade and Political Relations. He completed his undergraduate studies at the University of Vienna, where he majored in journalism with minors in political science as well as business and economics. Sebastian is responsible for reporting on the European Union’s external trade relations. He also writes about economic development and investment opportunities in Europe as well as about policy changes which affect the EU common market.

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