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EU & Canada Hope To Sign FTA This Year

Canadian and European Union (EU) trade ministers have said that their top priority is to sign their Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) this year.

Canada's Minister of International Trade, Chrystia Freeland, met last week with Cecilia Malmström, the EU's Trade Commissioner.

They released the following statement: "Our top priority is to sign CETA this year and see it enter into force in 2017. CETA will bring tremendous benefits to both of our economies and stands to increase Canada-EU bilateral exports of goods and services by 23 percent, or USD38bn, annually."

Negotiations toward a CETA were completed in 2014. In February 2016, Canada and the European Commission announced that the legal review of the agreement had been completed, and a new approach to investment protection and dispute resolution inserted into the text.

The statement added: "This agreement will make the investment system more transparent, independent, and impartial. CETA is one of the most ambitious and progressive trade agreements ever concluded by either Canada or the EU. This gold-standard agreement will benefit both our economies and deepen the already strong trade and investment relationship we share."

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