May 8th, 2017 - by Costanza Musu and Patrick LeBlond, University of Ottawa.
At a time when Canadian officials and policymakers are scrambling to make sense of the new U.S. administration’s rhetoric and actions on trade, immigration, and security, Ottawa cannot but view the EU as a relatively more stable and dependable partner. Moreover, EU leaders’ general support for open borders and the existing system of global governance is in line with the vision and priorities of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government.
Canada and the EU have recently signed two important agreements. The first is the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), which should enter into force in summer 2017. The second is the Strategic Partnership Agreement (SPA), which sets the principles and objectives of Canadian-EU cooperation for the foreseeable future. A news release by the Office of the Canadian Prime Minister described the SPA in the following terms:
The SPA lays out a strategic direction for stronger future relations and collaboration between Canada, the EU, and its member states at both the bilateral and multilateral level. The SPA will improve cooperation in important areas such as energy, environment and climate change, migration and peaceful pluralism, counter-terrorism and international peace and security, and effective multilateralism.