Canada and the EU have a long history of economic co-operation. Comprising 28 Member States with a total population of over 500 million and a GDP of €13.0 trillion in 2012, the European Union (EU) is the world’s second-largest single market, foreign investor and trader. As an integrated bloc, the EU represents Canada’s second-largest trading partner in goods and services. In 2008, Canadian goods and services exports to the EU totaled C$52.2 billion, an increase of 3.9% from 2007, and imports from the EU amounted to $62.4 billion.

According to Statistics Canada, the EU is also the second-largest source of foreign direct investment (FDI) in Canada, with the stock of FDI amounting to $133.1 billion at the end of 2008. In 2008, the stock of Canada’s direct investment in the EU totaled $136.6 billion, and the EU is the destination of 21.4% of Canadian direct investment abroad. According to Eurostat, the EU identified Canada as its third-largest destination and its fourth largest source of FDI in 2007.

CETA is a trade agreement between the EU and Canada that entered into force on 21 September 2017 with around 95% into effect. It cuts tariffs and makes it easier to export goods and services, benefitting people and businesses in both the EU and Canada.

National parliaments in EU countries, and in some cases regional ones too, need to approve CETA for their own state for the remaining 5% to take effect. Already, 14 European states have approved completely this trade agreement. There is no time limit to fully approve CETA for a member state but again, each of them is already taking advantage of CETA since the 21st of September 2017.

After more than 2 years of CETA, the EU exports to Canada grew by 18% and exports from Canada to the EU by 9% confirming this is a win-win deal for both territories. This also means more jobs, more growth and more quality products & services available for Canada and the EU.

Canada is not the United-States of America and a trade agreement with Canada is bound by clear rules that have to be followed by each party. CETA is as if Canada was part of the European Union, sharing common values and high-quality products & services for the benefits of more than 550 million individuals.

Sam Ayoub


Canada-Europe Economic Chamber - EU