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MEPs unhappy with trade deal process

The apparent collapse of a planned trade agreement between the EU and Canada has led MEPs to call for more transparency when such deals are made.

The Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (Ceta) was due to be signed by EU and Canadian representatives on 27 October. But the signing has been derailed because the parliament of Wallonia, the French-speaking region of Belgium, has repeatedly refused to support the deal, following concerns over political immunity that were not addressed during the negotiations.

Gianni Pittella, the president of the centre-left Socialists and Democrats group of MEPs, said in a statement on 23 October that there is a “clear problem” with the EU’s decision-making process on trade and that this “paralyses the whole EU”. The process “must be revised”, agreed Manfred Weber, the president of the centre-right European People’s Party group.

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