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Wed, 23 Oct, 2013 12:07:53 AM
Bilateral trades to increase EUR 26 billion
FTimes-STT Report, October 23

European Union and Canada reached to a free trade agreement last week with the view to increase two-way bilateral trade in goods and services by 23 per cent or EUR 26 billion , said an official press release on Tuesday.

Negotiations on the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) among the EU, its member states and Canada have continued since their launch in 2009.

Honing of the agreement details will continue before it can be given the final approval.

The agreement will boost the EU gross national product by approximately EUR 12 billion a year, said the press release issued by the ministry of foreign affair, adding that the agreement will foster economic growth and employment on both sides of the Atlantic.

The economic impacts of the agreement will become clearer once the final text of the agreement has been formulated.

"This solution demonstrates the EU's ability to negotiate. The agreement may also have a positive impact on the negotiations conducted between the EU and the United States," the Minister for European Affairs and Foreign Trade, Alexander Stubb said.

The agreement is expected to significantly lower the level of tariffs in bilateral trade between the contracting parties and create new market access opportunities in services and investment. 

In public procurement market, Canada will open access to European companies to engage in tenders at a regional level to a larger extent than it has done with any other agreement partner.

Finnish exports to Canada amounted to approximately EUR 596 million in 2012, representing one per cent of our overall exports, according to the release. 

The exports to Canada consist of, for example, oil products, machinery, equipment and motor vehicles. 

The value of goods imported from Canada to Finland, on the other hand, totalled EUR 346 million, which is 0.6 per cent of our overall imports.

The imported products include ore, coal, motor vehicles, and aircraft.

In the future, negotiations will continue on the closer details of the agreement.

Once these technical discussions are over, the parties will initialise the agreement.

Decisions on signing the agreement and concluding it will become topical at a later date, and they will be made on the basis of the Commission proposals, the release mentioned.

In addition to the approval of all EU Member States, the agreement requires also the approval of the European Parliament.

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