chapter  6
12 Pages

Canadian and European Unions and the Canada—EU CETA Negotiations

WithTeresa Healy

ABSTRACT Within the context of a deadlocked multilateral trade environment and a global

economic crisis, the governments of Canada and the European Union announced in 2009 the

beginning of negotiations towards a free trade agreement. It was not until January 2013 that

the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC) and the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC)

issued a joint statement on the proposed free trade agreement. Why did it take so long for

two central labour bodies to complete a relatively simple task of transnational solidarity, and

how were they able to overcome their differences in the end? I argue that it was not the

economic, but the political tensions between the two central labour bodies that took time to

resolve, and that this was accomplished only as a result of the meaningful expressions of

transnational labour solidarity by public sector unions affiliated to the ETUC and the CLC.