The Comprehensive Economic Trade Agreement (CETA)

Have you thought about growing your business abroad, but just don’t know where to start?  

Your luck is about to change.  The Comprehensive Economic Trade Agreement (CETA) is an exciting and comprehensive package of measures that open a commercial bridge between Canada and the EU (including the UK, for now). 

New procurement rules open public and private sectors to bids from interested parties on either side of the Atlantic.  Tariffs and customs regulations are reformed to make trading much more attractive.  And relaxed labor mobility eases work travel and contracting opportunities.  These are just some of the advantages that come into play with CETA. 

Canada and Europe share much in the way of culture, custom and practice.  Doing business in either jurisdiction will be more like working at home than you might imagine, and you may be surprised to learn how much Canadian–EU business there is already happening in your own region.  (Want to know more? Click here.)


What will CETA do?

CETA will:

  • remove customs duties
  • help make European firms more competitive in Canada
  • make it easier for EU firms to bid for Canadian public contracts
  • open up the Canadian services market to EU companies
  • open up markets for European food and drink exports
  • protect traditional European food and drink products (known as Geographical Indications) from being copied
  • cut EU exporters' costs without cutting standards
  • benefit small and medium-sized EU firms
  • benefit EU consumers
  • make it easier for European professionals to work in Canada
  • allow for the mutual recognition of some qualifications
  • create predictable conditions for both EU and Canadian investors
  • make it easier for European firms to invest in Canada
  • help Europe's creative industries, innovators and artists
  • support people's rights at work and the environment.


With CETA, the EU and Canada pledge to ensure that economic growth, social issues and environmental protection go hand in hand.


All this is very well but perhaps a little daunting.  If you are a small tech company or niche oil and gas supply company based in Vancouver, Calgary, Newcastle or Aberdeen how would you go about making the leap “across the pond” to explore the opportunities that lie beyond?  Wouldn’t it take up too much time, money and resources to visit, build market intelligence, establish relationships and identify opportunities?  Just how can you do that without making the scary commitment in time and money? 


This is where Fio Connect can help. 

We can serve as your “boots on the ground.” We have the ability to act as your personal connection to local government support, business suppliers, potential clients, and new opportunities.  By leveraging existing relationships, and (more importantly), knowing the local market, we are able to act on your behalf and, where necessary, dig and keep digging to find the right people for the right reasons in support of your new business venture.  That way, your business can get a jump start on real revenue and business success faster than transplanting and/or hiring sales and marketing professionals of your own.

We are already working with companies from the UK who are in the tech and energy/renewables sectors, and who want to be prepared for when CETA comes into full force.  We also have an EU-based affiliate waiting to help Canadian companies grow in that direction.

So, if you are looking for some inspiration and friendly help to explore and expand into a new and exciting market full of potential, feel free to reach out. We would be happy to chat and see where your next business adventure may take you.


Written by: Brian Cleator and Karen Hounjet