June 22nd, 2024

EU election: despite uncertainty, major division on trade unlikely, experts say

By The Canadian Press on June 10, 2024.

French President Emmanuel Macron speaks in Oradour-sur-Glane, southwestern France, Monday, June 10, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP - Ludovic Marin POOL

Experts say Canada’s trade relationship with the European Union isn’t necessarily in jeopardy, but there could be some knock-on effects after far-right parties made major election gains.

The results were so bad for French President Emmanuel Macron’s party that he called a snap election.

But Achim Hurrelmann, a political science professor at Carleton University, says the new European Parliament still has a solid centrist majority, and is unlikely to make major moves when it comes to trade agreements.

However, he says the election in France throws an extra layer of uncertainty over the ongoing process of ratifying the Canada-EU free trade agreement.

The 27 member states of the European Union are collectively Canada’s second-largest trading partner for goods and services.

In 2023, trade between the bloc and Canada of goods and services was valued at $158.1 billion.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 10, 2024.

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