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CETA’s signature: 38 statements, a joint interpretative instrument and an uncertain future. CEPS Commentary, 31 October 2016

Van der Loo, Guillaume (2016) CETA’s signature: 38 statements, a joint interpretative instrument and an uncertain future. CEPS Commentary, 31 October 2016. [Policy Paper]

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    Yesterday, Sunday October 30th, the EU and Canada finally signed the long-awaited Comprehensive and Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), which had been in limbo for almost two weeks because the Belgian region of Wallonia refused to give its consent to the federal Belgian government to sign the deal. As explained in our previous CEPS Commentary last week, 1 CETA was classified as a mixed agreement (a decision whose wisdom we dispute) and therefore requires not only the EU’s signature and ratification, but also those of the 28 member states. After a week full of political suspense and profiling, late-night negotiations at intra-Belgium level and informal contacts with and diplomatic pressure from the different EU institutions, Belgium’s prime minister Charles Michel could finally announce on Thursday that an agreement was reached with the Walloon government and that Belgium was able to sign CETA. In order the get the Walloons on board, an intra-Belgium Statement and a Joint Interpretive Instrument was negotiated. These documents were approved at the last-minute by COREPER on Thursday night and on Friday the Council approved, by fast-track writing procedure, the Council Decisions for signature and provisional application of CETA. This paved the way for the agreement’s signature yesterday at the EU-Canada Summit, referred to by President of the European Council Donald Tusk as “the most highly anticipated summit in recent memory”.2

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    Item Type: Policy Paper
    Subjects for non-EU documents: Countries > Belgium
    EU policies and themes > External relations > international trade
    Subjects for EU documents: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Series and Periodicals: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Annual Reports: UNSPECIFIED
    Series: Series > Centre for European Policy Studies (Brussels) > CEPS Commentaries
    Depositing User: Phil Wilkin
    Official EU Document: No
    Language: English
    Date Deposited: 31 Oct 2016 10:43
    Number of Pages: 6
    Last Modified: 31 Oct 2016 10:43

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