CELCAA invites the European Parliament to give its consent to the EU-Canada CETA

At a lunch-discussion at the European Parliament hosted by MEP Artis Pabriks, rapporteur on CETA, on 11th October 2016, CELCAA highlighted the benefits of the agreement for the EU agri-food trade sector. European Traders in agri-food and agri-commodities invited the European Parliament to give its ascent to the trade deal negotiated between the EU and Canada. In particular the wine, dairy, fruit and vegetable sectors expect that this increased market access in Canada will help support their growth and the employment in these sectors.

On 11th October 2016, Members of the European Parliament and their representatives from both the International Trade and Agriculture and Rural Development Committees attended a lunch-discussion on the benefits of CETA for the EU agri-food trade sector, hosted by MEP Pabriks, rapporteur on CETA, and organised by CELCAA, the European Liaison Committee for the Agri-food and commodities’ trade.

The programme featured contributions from Daniel Costello, Ambassador of Canada to the European Union; Christian Burgsmüller, Cabinet Member of Commissioner for Trade Cecilia Malmström, responsible for Canada; Paul Rooke, Chair of CELCAA; Alice O’Donovan from the European Dairy Trade Association Eucolait and Jean-Marie Barillère, President of the European Wine Companies’ Committee. Speakers stressed that CETA will provide duty free access to 92% of European agri-food products to Canada, while sensitive products will be preserved from full liberalisation. CETA will also provide protection to European GIs, which is of utmost importance for the dairy and wine sector.

Artis Pabriks, MEP and CETA rapporteur, emphasized that "International Free Trade is crucial to preserve liberal democracy freedoms and to guarantee the prosperity for people. CETA is a high standard modern trade treaty that will bind together both sides of the Atlantic and will help to those that are most in need like Small and Medium Businesses and the poorest parts of the economies”.

Daniel Costello, Ambassador of Canada to the European Union stressed “We are looking forward to seeing this progressive trade agreement deliver benefits to both the EU and Canada. The final outcome of CETA for our agri-food sectors is well-balanced and will deliver increased market access in areas of interest to many European producers. It also includes significant protections for European geographic indications (GIs). Canada and the EU have agreed in CETA that to do business in each other’s market we must meet the high standards of each other’s market in all areas including food safety and animal and plant health. Let’s get on with it and seize the benefits of CETA as soon as possible.”

“CETA is a great opportunity. We have to show how the EU can reach good, progressive and comprehensive agreement on all sectors. The agricultural sector cannot afford to lose this opportunity, considering all the potential results it can generate for our farmers!” declared MEP Paolo De Castro.

CELCAA President Paul Rooke mentioned that “Since the Lisbon Treaty, the European Parliament has a crucial role to play in design and conduct of the EU trade policy. CETA has delivered a balanced and ambitious approach for agriculture and one which promises to be positive for the EU agricultural sector – and it reflects the views of the European Parliament. That is why we, the trade community in agri-commodities and agri-food, call on the European Parliament to provide its consent to CETA’ to allow these benefits to be unlocked.”

"The EU wine sector expects several benefits from CETA. In addition to removing customs duties and strengthening the protection of EU wines Geographical Indications, CETA will provide new tools to tackle unfair practices discriminating EU imports adopted by the Canadian Provinces. Once implemented, CETA will increase and improve EU wine exports, with a net gain in growth and jobs for the European economy", reported Jean-Marie Barillère, President of Comité Européen des Entreprises Vins.

"Eucolait supports the conclusion of the CETA and looks forward to the additional access for EU dairy (notably cheese) on one of the world's most heavily protected dairy markets", stated Alice O’Donovan, from the dairy trade association Eucolait.


Note to editors:

CELCAA is the EU umbrella association representing EU organisations covering the trade in cereals, grains, oils and fats, fruit and vegetables, olive oil, agro-supply, animal feed, wine, meat and meat products, dairy and dairy products, eggs and egg products, poultry and game, tobacco, spices, cut flowers and plants and general produces. Members include CEEV, CIBC, COCERAL, EUCOLAIT, EUWEP, FETRATAB, GAFTA, SACAR and UECBV. CELCAA’s main objectives are to facilitate understanding of European decision-makers and stakeholders on the role played by the European traders in agri-products; to act as a platform of dialogue and communication with the European Institutions and to encourage public and general interests in agri-trade issues.