The European Union and Canada are beginning to reduce and abolish import tariffs on thousands of goods. The CETA trade agreement, which was negotiated for almost eight years, is partially due to take effect.
The agreement provides for the abolition of almost all tariff and non-tariff barriers between the European Union and Canada, although there are exceptions, including poultry.
Brussels estimates that EU businesses will save almost 500 million euros a year. This is the value of the customs duties paid for Union goods brought into Canada. In addition, the agreement allows companies to tender, and opens the market for services.
But the deal is stirring mixed reactions. According to experts this agreement is an opportunity for companies who see export opportunities to the Canadian market, the problem may be those who will have to compete with imports from Canada, such as farmers.
For now, only the trade part comes into effect. The controversial investment part will become effective after the ratification of the agreement in all EU countries. Until then, the international arbitration issues that resolve disputes over the investor-state line are to be dispelled.