The Party for the Animals votes against free trade agreement CETA

20 February 2017

The Party for the Animals voted against the controversial free trade agreement CETA in the European Parliament on the 15th of February 2017. According to MEP Anja Hazekamp, the free trade agreement between the EU and Canada will have demonstrable negative effects on people, animals, and the environment.

For example, CETA will increase the import of Canadian meat because the import duties on agricultural products will largely be abolished. And that is bad news for animals because the animal welfare standards in Canada are much lower than in Europe and are mostly on a voluntarily basis.

“The import of animal suffering from Canada will put further pressure on animal welfare in Europe too. European farmers will have to face unfair competition from Canada, which will undermine the support for animal welfare regulations in Europe. Furthermore, also the import duties on live animals will be abolished which will increase animal transports. Because of CETA, even more animals will be moved all over the world,” according to Hazekamp.

The Party for the Animals further points out that CETA will give multinationals more influence on European legislation. “Consultations between Brussels and Canada will take place even more frequently, giving free rein to the industrial lobby. Regulations that are needed to protect public health, animals, and the environment will be implemented less quickly if they impair free trade. Also, foreign companies will have the opportunity to sue governments – outside jurisdiction – if a government decision has a negative effect on them. This makes CETA undemocratic, causing it to be more difficult to protect people, animals, and the environment by European or national rules.”

Finally, the Party for the Animals points out the social consequences of the free trade agreement. “According to calculations, 204 thousand of jobs will get lost in Europe because of CETA. The Committee on Employment and Social Affairs of the European Parliament has confirmed this. The Party for the Animals will stand up for people, animals, and the environment in Strasbourg on Wednesday and will reject CETA,” according to Anja Hazekamp.