Strengthening International Trade and Relationships

WINNIPEG, August 6, 2010 – Premiers feel very strongly about the need to open and deepen international trade relations particularly in Europe and Asia. Premiers reiterated the need for provinces and territories to be able to fully participate in Canada’s international negotiations and forums that impact their jurisdiction.

Premiers stressed the importance of establishing a formal federal-provincial-territorial agreement on the role of provinces and territories in international negotiations, agreements and forums. Accordingly, Premiers agreed to develop a framework for provincial-territorial involvement in international negotiations for discussion with the federal government. This framework would outline:

  • The role of provinces and territories in the negotiation process;
  • The means by which provinces and territories would formally signify their consent to agreements;
  • The role of provinces and territories in the management of international agreements that affect their jurisdiction;
  • The role of provinces and territories in any institutional mechanism that are established to implement an agreement; and
  • Arrangements to ensure the flow of information to provinces and territories.

Canada-European Union Negotiations
Premiers are encouraged by the pace of the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) negotiations and will remain actively involved as negotiations move forward. Premiers agree on the importance of improving trade relations between Canada and the European Union (EU) and believe the CETA between Canada and the EU presently under negotiation has the potential to benefit all parties by creating substantial and reciprocal economic gains, more cooperation in a range of sectors, and an opportunity to address outstanding trade irritants.

Newfoundland and Labrador still has substantive issues with the content and process of CETA, and does not acknowledge any consensus position arising from the discussions of Premiers today.

Asia-Pacific Relations
Premiers call on the federal government to:

  • launch Canada-India economic partnership agreement negotiations;
  • successfully conclude existing trade and investment negotiations with Asia-Pacific partners, including negotiations toward a Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (FIPA) with China, free trade agreements with Korea and Singapore and multilateral free trade in the Asia-Pacific region; and
  • negotiate Open Skies treaties with key Asian partners.