Wednesday, 17 February 2021

Questions (15, 20)

Aodhán Ó Ríordáin

Question:

15. Deputy Aodhán Ó Ríordáin asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment if he has considered sending the Comprehensive Economic Trade Agreement to the relevant Oireachtas committee for proper scrutiny of its provisions prior to a final vote in Dáil Éireann; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [8209/21]

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Holly Cairns

Question:

20. Deputy Holly Cairns asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment if his attention has been drawn to the fact that several local authorities including Cork City Council have passed motions seeking Houses of the Oireachtas scrutiny of the EU-Canada Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement before a potential ratification; if he will consider these motions; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [8367/21]

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Written answers (Question to Enterprise)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 15 and 20 together.

The EU-Canada Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) is a modern and progressive Free Trade Agreement which provides new market opportunities across many sectors for Irish firms. CETA is a comprehensive, high-standard agreement, underpinned by EU values and principles. It has applied provisionally since September 2017 and 15 EU Member States have so far completed their domestic ratification processes.

As Ireland is a small advanced economy dependent on international trade and investment to support economic growth and development, Ireland supports the EU bilateral trade agenda whereby we seek to open up greater market opportunities through the suite of EU-Third Country Free Trade and/or Investment Protection Agreements in support of economic growth and development and ever-improving employment opportunities for our people.

In that context, I look forward to discussing and debating further this important Agreement and having the opportunity to highlight in detail the benefits that CETA provides for businesses and citizens alike. It is now intended that it will receive further scrutiny at Oireachtas Committee level to ensure thorough consideration before it is ratified. I look forward to the opportunity of bringing the relevant ratification motion back before the Dáil.