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Belgium: EP President Schulz claims optimism over derailed CETA deal01:02

Belgium: EP President Schulz claims optimism over derailed CETA deal

France, Strasbourg
October 24, 2016 at 20:22 GMT +00:00 · Published

President of the European Parliament Martin Schulz expressed his optimism about finding a solution for the ongoing EU-Canada negotiations on the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) which were put derailed by the refusal of the Belgian region of Wallonia to back the deal. Schulz spoke from the European Parliament in Strasbourg, Monday.

Speaking from the European Parliament in Strasbourg, Monday, Schulz said that "there is not only still hope for CETA, we are on the way to find a compromise and to find a solution for questions raised by the [Walloons], which are questions raised by a lot of citizens all over in Europe."

He added that he is "optimistic that we will find an answer," noting that finding answers "is in our common interest."

The President of the European Parliament argued that "it is certainly an internal problem in Belgium," stressing that "the federal government and the government of Namur must find an agreement between one another. But the questions raised by the Walloons are raised by many citizens in Europe so to find answers is in our common interest."

The signing of the deal is expected to take place on Thursday. However, without all Belgian regions backing the deal, Belgium may not able to sign the agreement. In that case, the trade deal might fall through as the EU requires unanimity from all of its 28 member states.

Along with the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), CETA would create the world's largest free-trade zone, encompassing some 800 million consumers and standardising trade regulations between the EU, North America and Canada. Both have faced fierce criticism for being undemocratic and for placing too much power in the hands of multinational companies at the expense of consumers and workers.

Belgium: EP President Schulz claims optimism over derailed CETA deal01:02
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President of the European Parliament Martin Schulz expressed his optimism about finding a solution for the ongoing EU-Canada negotiations on the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) which were put derailed by the refusal of the Belgian region of Wallonia to back the deal. Schulz spoke from the European Parliament in Strasbourg, Monday.

Speaking from the European Parliament in Strasbourg, Monday, Schulz said that "there is not only still hope for CETA, we are on the way to find a compromise and to find a solution for questions raised by the [Walloons], which are questions raised by a lot of citizens all over in Europe."

He added that he is "optimistic that we will find an answer," noting that finding answers "is in our common interest."

The President of the European Parliament argued that "it is certainly an internal problem in Belgium," stressing that "the federal government and the government of Namur must find an agreement between one another. But the questions raised by the Walloons are raised by many citizens in Europe so to find answers is in our common interest."

The signing of the deal is expected to take place on Thursday. However, without all Belgian regions backing the deal, Belgium may not able to sign the agreement. In that case, the trade deal might fall through as the EU requires unanimity from all of its 28 member states.

Along with the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), CETA would create the world's largest free-trade zone, encompassing some 800 million consumers and standardising trade regulations between the EU, North America and Canada. Both have faced fierce criticism for being undemocratic and for placing too much power in the hands of multinational companies at the expense of consumers and workers.

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