Provincial Government Stands Firm on its Position on CETA

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Provincial Government Stands Firm on its Position on CETA

by pmnationtalk on January 19, 2015552 Views

January 19, 2015

Advocating for the People of Newfoundland and Labrador

Today, the Honourable Keith Hutchings, Minister of Municipal and Intergovernmental Affairs, and the Honourable Darin King, Minister of Business, Tourism, Culture and Rural Development, provided an update on recent meetings held in Ottawa. The ministers met with a number of embassy representatives and industry associations to outline the Provincial Government’s position on the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) and the fisheries investment fund.

“While in Ottawa, we clearly communicated that while our government supports CETA and its benefits to our province, we fully expect the Federal Government to live up to the agreement we negotiated with them for the fisheries investment fund. Ambassadors and embassy officials noted that this was an issue between the Government of Canada and our province but were concerned that Newfoundland and Labrador’s lack of support could negatively influence the CETA deal. They were all hopeful for a quick resolution given that the European Union asked the Federal Government to involve the provinces in trade negotiations and further, the European Union was given assurances that issues among provinces concerning CETA were addressed.”
– The Honourable Keith Hutchings, Minister of Municipal and Intergovernmental Affairs

The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador, as part of CETA negotiations, negotiated an agreement with the Government of Canada to create a $400 million cost-shared fisheries investment fund, which was to be used for industry development and renewal. The fund was negotiated in the spring of 2013 and was officially announced in October 2013.

In recent months, the Federal Government unilaterally changed the terms of the agreement. New terms introduced by the Federal Government would result in the province having to demonstrate damages as a result of eliminating minimum processing requirements before any funding would flow. The Provincial Government has communicated to the Federal Government that the new terms are not acceptable and that it fully expects them to live up to the agreement as originally negotiated.

Meetings were held with embassy representatives including those from the United Kingdom, Germany, Spain and Denmark. Additional meetings were also held with the European Union Ambassador, the Canadian Agri-Food Trade Alliance (CAFTA) and its member associations, the Canadian Chamber of Commerce (CCC), the Canadian Council of Chief Executives (CCCE), the Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters (CME) as well as New Democratic Party Trade Critic, Don Davies, Member of Parliament for Vancouver Kingsway.

“The Federal Government’s failure to honour the terms of this fund is jeopardizing CETA for all industries, economic sectors, and indeed all Canadian and European Union citizens. As a result of the Federal Government’s failure to honour its commitment respecting the fisheries investment fund, I have advised the federal Minister of International Trade, Ed Fast, that the Provincial Government is suspending its participation in all trade agreements and all trade agreements currently under negotiation by the Federal Government would not have any effect in matters within the jurisdiction of Newfoundland and Labrador. ”
-The Honourable Darin King, Minister of Business, Tourism, Culture and Rural Development

The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador will continue to outline the province’s position on this important issue. It is expected that these groups will encourage the Federal Government to address this issue in order to best protect the interests of their respective members and stakeholders.

Letter to the Honourable Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade: www.gov.nl.ca/releases/2015/ma/0119_letter.pdf

Fact sheet outlining Provincial Government’s position on CETA which was provided to representatives at meetings in Ottawa: www.ibrd.gov.nl.ca/pdf/Gov_NL_Fishery_Renewal.pdf

QUICK FACTS

  • Today, the Honourable Keith Hutchings, Minister of Municipal and Intergovernmental Affairs, and the Honourable Darin King, Minister of Business, Tourism, Culture and Rural Development, provided an update on recent meetings held in Ottawa regarding CETA.
  • The Provincial Government has advised the Federal Government that it is suspending its participation in all trade agreement and all trade agreements currently under negotiations by the Federal Government would not have any effect in matters within the jurisdiction of Newfoundland and Labrador.
  • The ministers met with a number of embassy representatives and industry associations to outline the Provincial Government’s position on CETA and the fisheries investment fund. It is expected these groups will encourage the Federal Government to address this issue in order to best protect the interests of their respective members and stakeholders.

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Media contacts:

Kevin Guest
Director of Communications
Department of Municipal and Intergovernmental Affairs
709-729-1983, 730-2320
[email protected]

Tansy Mundon
Director of Communications
Department of Business, Tourism, Culture and Rural Development
709-729-4570, 693-1865
[email protected]

NT4

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