EU’s Tusk Says CETA is Still Possible Ahead of Thursday Deadline

A planned EU-Canada summit to sign a free trade deal was still possible on Thursday, European Council President Donald Tusk said on Wednesday, as Belgian politicians entered a second day of talks on the future of the pact.

Prime Minister Charles Michel hosted talks from early on Tuesday of regional authorities, including of Wallonia and Brussels that have rejected an accord backed by all 27 other EU governments.

The talks paused after two hours to allow some of those present to attend a funeral of a Belgian politician. They were scheduled to resume at 1500 CET (1300 GMT).

Without assent from its regions and linguistic communities, Belgium cannot sign the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) at a planned EU-Canada summit on Thursday to be attended by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

“I still hope that Belgium will prove that it is a consensus-building champion and that we will be able to finalize this agreement soon,” Tusk told a session of the European Parliament.

Tusk said that there would be consequences for Europe’s global position if it failed to strike a free trade deal with Canada, “the most European country outside Europe and a close friend and ally”.

via Reuters

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza