Canada negotiatiing EU trade agreement in secret

Dear editor,

Canada is facing a number of challenges at the federal, provincial, and local levels.

Today, we are facing one particular issue that touches on all these levels of government.

Dear editor,

Canada is facing a number of challenges at the federal, provincial, and local levels.

Today, we are facing one particular issue that touches on all these levels of government.

The terms of CETA (Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement) between Canada and the European Union are currently being (secretly) negotiated.

This trade agreement has been kept from the public for too long. Although organizations such as CUPE, Trade Justice Network, APTN, Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives among others, have addressed the matter, it has consistently failed to make it into the mainstream media which is the main source of news and information for most of us.

This free trade agreement could embed within it devastating implications in the social, political, environmental, as well as economic spheres. As the European Union members and corporations are facing a growing financial crisis, I cannot but conclude that these transnational corporations are becoming more desperate to expand their market here, in Canada.

CETA and the resulting policies will affect the lives of each and every Canadian. For instance, the Peace Alliance Winnipeg News identifies some of the major threats:

“It’s the biggest free trade deal Canada has ever negotiated. But the public is being left in the dark about Canada-EU trade talks by the federal and provincial governments. This trade deal is not just about trade. It’s a privatization and deregulation designed to undermine local communities and give new powers to multinational corporations.”

If CETA is signed it will:

• Threaten our democracy by putting corporate rights first;

• Encourage privatization of Canadians’ drinking water and wastewater services;

• Threaten local job creation and buy-local policies;

• Cause prescription drug costs to skyrocket by at least $2.8 billion per year;

• Allow big corporations to ignore or challenge environmental regulations;

• Undermine Canadian farmers and endanger local food security.

These only scratch the surface of the matter.

My utmost concern is the secrecy under which this trade agreement is being negotiated. I find it alarming that my neighbours and members of the community of Comox Valley are not aware that this trade agreement even exists.

I would like our residents in the Comox Valley to get involved in these negotiations and find out how CETA would affect our community.

Will our water be privatized? Would our local government services be privatized? And what other effects would we face in our area should the terms of CETA be implemented?

I have a number of resources and links to websites that are very informative. I would invite those community members to contact me for further details or check

It is my hope that we can empower our community by creating more awareness on federal government policies such as CETA, which too often take place in secrecy resulting in the lack of public discussion and input.

Jeannie Graham,

Black Creek

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Many of the static aircraft displays are decorated in thousands of lights for almost the entire month of December at the airpark on Military Row in Comox. Photo by Erin Haluschak
VIDEO: Christmas lights on display at 19 Wing airpark

Per COVID-19 rules, viewing of the display is strongly encouraged by vehicle and not exiting the car

GP Vanier grad Samantha Rebitt has earned the 2020 Governor General’s Academic Medal, with an academic average of 99.8 per cent. Photo supplied
GP Vanier announces its 2020 Governor General’s Academic Medal winner

Samantha Rebitt had a near-perfect 99.8 per cent academic average

The suspect in a Nov. 22 attempted robbery at the Ryan Road 7-Eleven has been arrested. Photo supplied
Courtenay man arrested in connection with attempted robbery at 7-Eleven

A 19-year old Courtenay man has been arrested following an attempted robbery… Continue reading

The Nov. 20 WestJet flight 3171 has been identified by the BC Centre for Disease Control with a COVID case aboard. (Black Press file photo)
COVID-19 exposure reported on a fifth flight at Comox airport

Another exposure risk from flight originating in Calgary

A B.C. Ambulance Service paramedic wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 moves a stretcher outside an ambulance at Royal Columbia Hospital, in New Westminster, B.C., on Sunday, November 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. records deadliest weekend of COVID-19 pandemic with 46 deaths; more than 2,300 cases

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry provides COVID-19 update

Letter to the editor.
LETTER – Horgan’s election promise of COVID relief cash is money foolishly spent

Dear editor, Would you dip into your child’s registered education fund to… Continue reading

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Peter Beckett. ~ File photo
Supreme Court of Canada to decide if it will hear appeal in 2010 wife murder trial

Peter Beckett has stood trial twice for murder in connection with the death of his wife, Laura Letts-Beckett

Tabor Home in Abbotsford. (Ben Lypka/Abbotsford News)
B.C.’s largest COVID-19 care-home outbreak records 19 deaths, 147 cases

Tabor Home in Abbotsford has been battling outbreak since Nov. 4

Ash and Lisa Van carry a freshly cut Christmas tree while wearing personal protective masks at a Christmas Tree Farm in Egbert, Ontario, Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020 THE CANADIAN PRESS/ Cole Burston
‘Everyone wants a tree and they want it now’: Christmas tree sales on pace for record

Anticipated demand for Christmas trees has sparked a rush by some to purchase more trees wholesale

Business groups have been advocating for years that local approvals for construction in B.C. are too long and restricted, and that B.C.’s outdates sales tax deter business investment. (Black Press Media file photo)
B.C. residents worried about COVID-19 deficit, business survey finds

Respondents support faster local approvals, value added tax

The first of two earthquakes near Alaska on the morning of Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2020, is shown in blue. (USGS)
No tsunami risk after two earthquakes near Alaska

Both earthquakes hit near the U.S. state on Dec. 1

The CVRD will reconsider its policies on fireworks after receiving complaints. (File photo)
Cowichan Valley Regional District considers options for fireworks after complaints

Distict only allows fireworks on Halloween and New Year’s Eve, with a permit

Most Read