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We applaud the government’s announcement that after four years of negotiation, the Canada-EU Comprehensive Economic & Trade Agreement (CETA), is about to be signed.

By tearing down trade barriers and encouraging regulatory coordination, this deal with the world’s largest economy will bring more opportunities for exporters and lower prices for consumers, as well as encourage new investments in Canada. As we learned with NAFTA and the Canada-U.S. Free Trade Agreement before it, international trade is a major engine for economic growth. And with the global economy continuing to struggle, such initiatives are more important than ever.

The Prime Minister, the Minister of Trade and the negotiating teams from both sides should be congratulated for their sustained efforts and resolve in the face of very challenging issues. Without their leadership, this agreement would not have been possible.

Without seeing the final text we cannot know which sectors have benefitted and which have not. But we have long argued that more trade tends to spread benefits throughout the economy over time.

We look forward to working with the government and our membership to make sure the opportunities opened up by this agreement are fully realized. We also hope the momentum generated by signing this deal will help push forward Canada’s other major trade talks, including with Japan, India, Korea and the Trans-Pacific Partnership countries.

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