Transatlantic free trade agreements: Coordination Committee at impasse
Thursday, 27 October 2016
The Coordination Committee was not able to reach agreement on the Belgian position regarding the free trade treaty between Canada and European Union yesterday (Wednesday). The meeting finished yesterday around 11 p.m. It resumed today (Thursday) at 10.00 a.m.
The wording of the documents “has in the main been resolved,” the office of the Prime Minister, Charles Michel, commented.
The French-speaking regional governments, however, wished to proceed with a number of further analyses during last night.
The Minister-President of the Wallonia-Brussels Federation, Rudy Demotte stated, “We are continuing to work upon some issues. We have information which needs to be technically examined overnight.”
“There is still work to do,” Oliver Paasch, the Minister-President of the German-speaking community, acknowledged.
Paasch also stated that “the intra-Belgian discussions had indeed made progress.”
The Prime Minister contacted the President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, to inform him of the position.
Today, Juncker is meeting the President of the European Council, Donald Tusk.
The Committee of Permanent Representatives in EU member states (COREPER) is also due to meet today at 11 a.m.
The Minister for Foreign Affairs, Didier Reynders, stated, “We will see if it is possible to go to this meeting with an agreed Belgian stance on the issue.”
At the time of going to press, the Coordination Committe have now reached agreement on CETA.