Ottawa, ON – Randy Hoback, Conservative Shadow Minister for International Trade and Supply Chain Resilience, and Richard Martel, Conservative Shadow Minister for Sport and Economic Development for the Regions of Quebec, released the following statement on the Liberals’ failures to defend free trade through the ratification of the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA):

“Nearly eight years after CETA was signed in principle by the previous Conservative government, the Liberals have failed to fully ratify this crucial free-trade agreement, with 12 members states yet to formalize the agreement.

“Earlier this week, Minister Ng failed to even mention this issue with the European Commission Vice-President and European Union Commissioner for Trade. It is entirely unacceptable that the Liberals continue their failures to stand up for free and fair trade with some of our most important trading partners.

“Between 2006 and 2015, it was the previous Conservative government that concluded free trade negotiations with 51 countries and implemented foreign investment for Canadian investors with many more. This was a part of an ambitious, pro-trade plan focused on new trade and investment ties to allow Canadian businesses and workers to expand, flourish, and become more competitive.

“The Liberals’ failure to fully ratify this deal is yet another sign of their unwillingness to commit to free and fair trade with the European Union, a trading partner which imports over $28 billion of Canadian goods annually.

“Canada’s Conservatives will always stand up for free trade agreements that open export markets and create Canadian jobs, investment, and strategic partnerships. We will continue to advocate for free trade agreements that are beneficial to Canadians, and strongly urge this Liberal government to ensure CETA is fully ratified as quickly as possible.”