European parliamentarians pave way for vote on EU-Canada trade agreement

Strasbourg: The European Parliament (EP) on Wednesday rejected a request to refer a landmark free-trade deal signed between the European Union (EU) and Canada in October to the European Court of Justice for an opinion.

The Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement, or CETA, was signed on October 30, 2016. It still needs to get consent from the EP to enter into force provisionally, Xinhua news agency reported.

However, 89 members of European Parliament (MEPs) jointly submitted a proposal to refer the deal to the EU auditors for an opinion, questioning whether the free-trade deal’s investor protection provisions are in line with the right of governments to regulate in order to achieve legitimate public policy aims, such as protecting health, safety or the environment.