OTTAWA – Leaked documents on the free-trade talks between Canada and Europe suggest the two sides have the bare bones for an agreement in the troublesome field of autos.
The Canadian Press has obtained a European list of outstanding issues on rules of origin, which have long been a barrier to a final Canada-EU free trade agreement.
The list includes a proposed short-term solution for the auto sector, giving Canada a quota of cars that it could ship and sell to Europe with no penalty.
But a longer-term solution that would limit foreign content in Canadian cars to 40 per cent would be dependent on talks with the United States about how to count American auto parts in vehicles shipped from Canada.
The 40 per cent limit on foreign content would not include U.S. content in Canadian-made cars — a recognition of the deeply integrated Canada-U.S. market.
The Canada-EU trade talks are in their final stages, with arrangements on beef, pork, procurement, financial services and pharmaceuticals still to be worked out.