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back to index backAMERItalk February,  2017


Canada’s Intent to Create the World’s Largest Trading Bloc

Canada’s signing of the Comprehensive Economic Trade Agreement (CETA) offers a competitive advantage to companies choosing a Canadian location.

Signed in Brussels in October by Canada and the EU after seven years of negotiations, the Comprehensive Economic Trade Agreement (CETA) comes into force after being ratified by Canadian and European national parliaments. Combined with NAFTA, CETA provides companies located in Canada with preferential access to the world’s two largest economies — the U.S. and the EU — that together with Canada represent half of the world’s GDP. Canadian bilateral free-trade agreements (FTAs) with countries like Korea, Chile, and Peru embrace another 5 percent of global GDP, and the Canadian government is actively engaging on FTAs with China (another 15 percent) and India (3 percent).

In light of populist electoral victories on both sides of the Atlantic, CETA is also seen as a workable template for more bilateral trade deals.2 According to Canada’s Financial Post newspaper, Canadian exports to the UK would increase by 15 percent as a result of CETA, while British exports to Canada would increase by 2 percent — well worth it for both. Some 42 percent of Canadian exports to the EU are to the UK.

The bottom line is that CETA symbolizes a trade-ready Canada that is open to investment from companies eager to take advantage of the federal government’s desire to be part of the world’s largest trading bloc. Already Canada is first among G7 members with the greatest share of global GDP covered by FTAs.

As the CanadaWest Foundation has noted, in a fractious world, CETA proves that Canada can negotiate with a unified and coherent position internationally” and forges a Canadian reputation as a dynamic, pragmatic, and responsive trading partner.”

For international companies considering new investments in Canada, CETA makes strides in three important areas: elimination of tariffs, ease of access concerning the free-flow of people in services-based businesses, and common regulations.

David Ross is CEO of Ross Video, an Ottawa-based international exporter of video production products and services to more than 100 countries. He states that before CETA, even with the opening of offices and hiring sales and support staff in Europe, we still can’t complete that feeling of being local if we have to add all manner of import duties and complex administrative processes to sell there.” He now notes, With this deal, we get cleaner access to 28 countries.”

Source: Area Development - GAI





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