The European Parliament votedon February 15, 2017 to approve the implementation of the Canada-EU Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) and the Strategic Partnership Agreement (SPA), bringing CETA closer to full ratification.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, together with Donald Tusk, President of the European Council, and Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission, signed CETA during the European Union-Canada Leaders’ Summit on October 30, 2016.
Bill C-30, the legislation to implement CETA in Canada, was introduced in the House of Commons on October 31, 2016. Bill C-30 passed third reading in the House of Commons on February 14, 2017, and was introduced in the Senate on February 14, 2017.
Speaking to the European Parliament on February 16, 2017, Trudeau commended the resilient relationship between Canada and the EU that is based on common values, inclusion and diversity. Trudeau also said that CETA will address the “valid” concern of some people who “are worried that the current system only benefits society’s narrow elite.”
Trade that is free & fair means more opportunities for businesses & jobs for people trying to make a good living – #CETA will get us there. pic.twitter.com/LIjyrCQohF
You see, collectively, we believe in democracy, transparency, and the rule of law. We believe in the recognition and respect of human rights. And we believe in inclusion, and embracing diversity.
We know that, in an increasingly connected world, we must choose to lead the international economy, not simply be subjected to its whims…
The motto of the European Union, “United in Diversity”, is a great reminder of what can be accomplished when, despite our differences, countries come together for the mutual benefit of our people.
Now, we live in a time when some people are worried that the current system only benefits society’s narrow elite. And their concern is valid.
This anxiety towards the economy and trade – the worry that our kids won’t have access to the same jobs and opportunities that we have – can be addressed only if we ensure that trade is inclusive, and that everyone benefits.
And this agreement – the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement – is a terrific example of just that. Because, at its heart, CETA is a framework for trade that works for everyone.
This agreement will result in the creation of good, well-paying jobs for middle class workers. It will put food on the table for families, and help grow and strengthen our communities…
Make no mistake: This isn’t just about trade, in terms of imports and exports, dollars-in and dollars-out. It’s about making people’s lives better. CETA is a comprehensive blueprint for responsible economic cooperation between countries.