A report in Saturday’s Globe and Mail indicates that MP for Abbotsford, Minister for International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway Ed Fast’s hopes for a free trade agreement with the European Economic Union (EU) may have just gone up in smoke.
Fast has devoted the majority of his time in Parliament under Prime Minister Stephen Harper to negotiating both the EU Free Trade deal and the Trans-Pacific Partnership Free-Trade Agreement (TPP), which is also stalled.
If the EU Free Trade Deal fails it will be a major set back for Harper’s Conservative government which has based most of it’s pre-election campaigning on the economy, which is slowing, and the two free trade deals it is negotiating. Harper and Fast jumped the gun on the EU deal announcing it was a done deal.
Report: Germany to reject EU-Canada trade deal
[excerpts] Germany is to reject a multi-billion free trade deal between the European Union and Canada which is widely seen as a template for a bigger agreement with the United States, a leading German paper reported on Saturday.
Citing diplomats in Brussels, the Sueddeutsche Zeitung reported that Berlin objects to clauses outlining the legal protection offered to firms investing in the 28-member bloc. Critics say they could allow investors to stop or reverse laws.
Asked about the report, a spokesman for Germany’s Economy Ministry referred to correspondence which outlined Germany’s concerns about investor protection in talks with both countries.
“The German government does not view as necessary stipulations on investor protection, including on arbitration cases between investors and the state with states that guarantee a resilient legal system and sufficient legal protection from independent national courts,” Deputy Economy Minister Stefan Kapferer wrote in response to an enquiry from a Greens lawmaker.