Justin Trudeau has made himself a name as Canadian’s most popular politician. This is not just for his good hair and charm, but for strengthening Canada’s international relations. On July 4th, the prime minister met with Ireland’s leader Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, clad in Mountie and maple leaf novelty socks, in Dublin to talk business and CETA.
CETA-What it Means
The young prime ministers were in talks regarding the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA). Justin Trudeau responded to the press saying it is a “great model of a progressive trade deal … It is not just a great deal for each side but also a model to the world.” He said they placed an emphasis on benefitting small businesses and workers as opposed to just big corporations.
As of now, less than one quarter of Canadian-made goods reach the European Union without tariffs. Now with CETA, 98 percent of exports will enter duty-free. The Government of Canada states that, “Another 1 percent will be eliminated over a period of up to seven years. Once CETA is fully implemented, 99 percent of EU tariff lines will be duty-free.” Now maple syrup with make its way to Europe sans tax! Among other benefits, changes will be made regards to customs and trade facilitation. Now processing and wait times at border lines will reduce uncertainty, wait times and overall save money. This opens up new markets and opportunities for Canadian-based companies and distributors.
What about Brexit?
Brexit will impose some problems for the U.K as they exit the EU. The United Kingdom are not supposed to embark on any individual trade deals with international counterparts until after the official departure in 2019. Although, according to Varadkar, Ireland has “much more to gain from free trade than we have to lose”. They feel the newfound relationship and respect between countries will carry them into new deals after the exit.
In short, through the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), Canadian imports and exports will receive the same treatment as the other members in the European Union Bloc. Canadian businesses will now enjoy reduced or eliminated tariffs, a free flow of goods between borders and customs and trade facilitation. Trudeau and Varadkar believe this partnership between the two powerhouses is another milestone in an ever-changing global trade landscape.