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CETA Agreement Good for NL: Ministers

CETA Agreement Good for NL: Ministers

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Published by: EU-Canada Partnership on Nov 08, 2013
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CETA Agreement Good for NL: Ministers
Friday , October 18 2013
The provincial government is heralding an agreementin principle reached between Canada and theEuropean Union which opens up trade lines betweenthe two. The agreement, which was four years in the making, is not expected to be ratified by all membernations until 2015. The agreement has bigimplications to the fishery in this province. VOCM'sDanielle Barron has the details. 95 per cent of tariff lines will be duty-free immediately upon ratification; including frozen crab, shrimp, herring, mackeral, halibut, and flatfish. For the remaining fish and seafood products, the tariff will beremoved in seven years. The agreement once implemented will according to the province add $25-million back into the fishing industry, and establish new opportunities which could add $100-million tothe industry. In order to achieve unrestricted access to EU markets, the provincial government hasgranted an exemption to minimum processing requirements for fish and seafood destined for Europe.Minimum processing requirements will be maintained for products destined for other markets. FisheriesMinister Keith Hutchings says CETA allows unprecendented access to a new market. Hutchings says each European citizen consumes more than 21 kg of fish with consumers demandinghigh quality products. Hutchings says the orginal offer wasn't anything that the province came close toentertaining. He says the MPRs are an opportunity not a threat. He says the removal of end-userestrictions does allow for additional processing that isn't available today not only for current speciesbut future as well. Meanwhile, Premier Kathy Dunderdale has cut short a trade mission to Brazil as a result of today'sannouncement. The premier wasn't expected to return until October 27th. Fishermen's Union President Earle McCurdy says he's pleased restrictive tariffs to local seafood havebeen lifted. McCurdy says the focus now should be on a marketing strategy for the European market.He says now that the competitive disadvantages have been lifted it's time to focus on highlighting localproducts to the European marketplace. Derek Butler, the Executive Director of the Association of Seafood Producers calls it an historic day forthe Newfoundland and Labrador fishery. He says you'd have to go back more than a century to seeanything close to approaching the significance of opening new markets to local product. He says theBond-Blaine Treaty of the 1880s opened American markets to Newfoundland salt cod. 

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