CETA - 1. Elimination of agricultural and food customs duties (Fr)
Thanks to CETA provisions the Parties will benefit from better access to the various markets for agricultural and food products, with the exception of some politically sensitive products, such as poultry and eggs, which are completely excluded from the scope of application of CETA.
1. The commitments of the European Union
When CETA comes into force, the EU will eliminate 94% from its agricultural customs tariffs, with a transitional period of 7 years for complete elimination.
Fresh, frozen and prepared fruits and vegetables
This immediate elimination will apply to a variety of Canadian products such as fresh or frozen cherries (whose current duties are 12%), as well as sweet, dried cranberries (whose current duties are 17.6%) .
Sweet corn will benefit from an immediate tariff exemption on a quota of 8,000 tonnes.
Access to the EU dairy market will be free of tariffs and quotas.
Tariffs on Canadian seeds (such as barley, oats and wheat) will be phased out over a transitional period of 7 years.
Beef and pork
In the case of certain meats, free tariff quotas will be applied: the EU undertakes to provide an exemption from the tariff quota for 50,000 tonnes of beef and veal, as well as an exemption from the tariff quota for 81,000 tonnes of pork .
Fish and seafood
On fish and seafood, around 96% of the EU tariffs will be eliminated immediately, and complete elimination will be achieved 7 years later. Immediate elimination will apply to Canadian products such as:
- Prawns cooked and peeled in packages (whose current prices start at 20%)
- Frozen mackerel (the current fee of which is 20%)
- Fresh, frozen and frozen mussels (with current rates of 20%)
Major Canadian exports to the EU, such as shrimp and cod, will benefit from a transitional tariff quota regime (23,000 tonnes and 1,000 tonnes respectively).
Rules of origin
As Canada and the EU are the only parties to CETA, the trade benefits it provides only apply to products originating in Canada or the EU. The Agreement provides rules of origin, that is, rules that will determine under what conditions a product can be considered to have originated in Canada or the EU. The idea is to prevent third countries to the agreement from indirectly benefiting from its mechanisms promoting the free market.
Although the majority of Canadian agricultural products meet the origin criteria for this type of product (thus justifying the elimination of customs duties), CETA notes the existence on the market of certain products with a rate high of imported shares. To address this situation, the Agreement provides more flexible rules of origin for a number of these products, or in other words, derogations from the rules of origin.
For example :
- Fish / seafood: more flexible rules of origin apply to certain Canadian products such as: o Prepared and preserved salmon (for export up to 3,000 tonnes);
- Cooked and frozen lobster (for export up to 2,000 tonnes);
- Sardines prepared and preserved (for export up to 200 tonnes);
- Industrial shrimp (for export up to 5,000 tonnes).
- Upon entry into force of the Agreement, an initial volume of 30,000 tonnes of high sugar products (such as flavored drink mixes, iced tea mixes, hot chocolate and instant coffee) will benefit from the application flexible rules of origin; this volume will subsequently increase in order to allow exports of up to 51,840 tonnes of these products over a period of 15 years, following a conditional growth mechanism.
- The exemption will apply to chocolate and confectionery (such as chewing gum, sweet candies and chocolate preparations) up to 10,000 tonnes.
- Cat and dog food, up to 60,000 tonnes.
2. Canada's commitments
98.4% agricultural tariff lines will be set to 0% when CETA comes into force. 98.8% of the Canadian tariffs will be exempt from customs seven years after coming into force.
Canada has also agreed to increase its import quota for cheese from the EU duty free by 17,000 tonnes.
For Canadian fish and seafood products, 100% tariff lines will be free of customs duties immediately upon entry into force of the Agreement. Canada also commits to granting most-favored-nation treatment to ships from EU member states, that is, they will be given the same better benefits that Canada could grant to ships other states.
3. Wines and spirits
CETA will incorporate the terms of a pre-existing industry agreement, the terms of the Canada-EU Wine and Spirits Agreement1.
The following advantages for the development of the trade in wines and spirit drinks are provided for in this Agreement:
- Mutual recognition of various oenological practices, processes and product specifications (listed in the Annexes to the Canada-EU Agreement on Wine and Spirits);
- The establishment of a list of conditions relating to consumer protection and quality standards for new oenological practices or their modifications;
- The establishment of rules for wine certification according to which no Party may impose a more restrictive system than that applied on the date of entry into force of the Agreement. CETA also provides for the protection of certain domestic practices such as the bottling requirements of Quebec. Finally, the Agreement reduces the "cost of services" that the Canadian provinces levy on European wines.
4. Biotechnology, Sanitary and phytosanitary measures
Biotechnology is a technological application making use of living systems and organisms to create useful products. Field genetics and food geniuses are examples of this type of application. Aware of their consequences on our earth, CETA encourages cooperation between regulatory agents on this sensitive subject. Finally, CETA will build on the existing Canada-EU Veterinary Agreement as the basis for cooperation in the areas of plant, animal health and food safety.
5. Customs and trade facilities & agricultural subsidies
Customs and trade facilities
As with industrial products, the Agreement provides for customs and trade facilitation measures, such as:
- Access to advance rulings on the origin or tariff classification of products;
- When possible, the implementation of automated border procedures;
- An impartial and transparent system for handling complaints against customs decisions.
In order to dispose of surplus domestic production of agricultural products on the world market, it is often the case that governments or their agencies stimulate the export of these products by granting subsidies to producers or agricultural industries.
These subsidies can take various forms, such as financing linked to export performance or financing aimed at reducing the costs of marketing, processing and international transport / shipment of agricultural products.
Because subsidies have the effect of increasing production and lowering prices, they can distort competitiveness on the world market if used excessively.
Countries with less or no subsidy (for financial or regulatory reasons) are generally less competitive in a given market.
CETA Parties are responding to this problem by committing to mutually prohibit export subsidies related to tariff elimination.
In other words, the tariff elimination provisions of the Agreement will only apply to unsubsidized products.
The Agreement will also set up a mechanism allowing the consultation of all types of government aid granted to agricultural products.
© Weissberg & Weissberg 2015
All articles on CETA
All articles on CETA
1. Elimination of agricultural tariffs
2. Elimination of industrial tariffs
3. Services and labor mobility
5. Public procurement
6. Intellectual property
7. Sustainable development, environment and work
8. Dispute resolution and monitoring
(Click on the titles to access the related articles)