France Sees the EU-Canada Agreement As A ‘Template’ For TTIP

By Frédéric Simon, EurActiv 2016-03-15

Paris would like to “copy-paste” key passages from the EU-Canada free trade agreement, concluded last week, particularly those relating to the arbitration court that is such a controversial issue in Europe. EurActiv France reports.

Minister of State for Foreign Trade Matthias Fekl welcomed the fact that the French proposal for “an international investment court” was largely included in the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), concluded on Monday (29 April) between the European Union and Canada.

Fekl noted “with interest” the adoption of the main points of the French reform agenda for investment protection. These include “the preservation of the state’s right to regulate, the founding of a real public dispute settlement court and the establishment of an appeal mechanism”.

Paris now hopes to apply this model to other free trade deals, particularly the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), which is currently under negotiation between the EU and the United States.

Rapid progress

“We didn’t expect things to move so fast. The whole issue was smoothed out in ten days,” said an EU diplomat. The source also hailed the deal as a demonstration of political will by the new Canadian government.

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