Shipping industry calls for exemption from European Union carbon market reform

The first round of the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) began nearly eight years ago, and has had to overcome an increasing anti-populist sentiment in Europe.

The deal, which was seven years in the making, was almost killed off last year when it was blocked by the Belgian region of Wallonia until it secured concessions.

"This is the right deal at the right time for the world".

But other, more controversial aspects of the deal, such as the investor court system, will require ratification by European Union member states which could take years.

The landmark EU-Canada trade deal which aims to boost goods, services and investment has been given the green light by MEPs today (February 15).

The parliament backed key elements of the proposed changes to the EU's flagship emissions reduction system, which seek to rebalance the market by tightening supply over time, while protecting industry from worldwide competition.

Canada is the EU's 12th most important trading partner.

But the EU-Canada agreement has brought on new legal questions after the European Commission decided last summer to give national governments power to approve or reject the deal, marking a turning point from previous deals that the EU executive agreed on behalf of member countries.

The deal could apply provisionally from April, subject to both sides completing all necessary internal procedures.

"This is a watershed moment - European Union trade policy will never be the same again", said senior Scottish MEP David Martin, whose Socialists and Democrats group split on the issue.

"The reason why, is because they see CETA as an opportunity to reduce the regulation and the red tape and bureaucracy as they see it".

Deirdre Clune - also a Fine Gael MEP - said the deal has "enormous potential for a range of Irish businesses".

However, not every agricultural sector stands to benefit from CETA.

Access to jobs in Canada.

He suggested that by "adopting CETA, we chose openness, and growth and high standards over protectionism and stagnation".

The President of the European Parliament, Jean Claude Juncker welcomed the vote which concludes the ratification of the deal at EU level. Three years of negotiations on an EU-U.S. trade deal have been put on hold since Trump took office in January and let loose proposals for American import taxes.

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