The Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) between the EU and Canada provisionally entered into force in September 2017. This means that much of the agreement is being applied before the national parliaments have voted it through. Work on removing barriers to trade between the parties is therefore ongoing.
With the agreement in place, 98% of duties between the parties will be removed immediately and a further one percent will go within seven years. Apart from removing customs duties, the agreement also means non-tariff barriers to trade will be reduced.
An important element of this process is avoiding duplication in product testing, as the EU and Canada will mutually recognise the assessments that have been carried out by each party’s accredited bodies, within the product areas covered by the agreement. But as yet there are only two areas in which accredited testing laboratories can undertake assessments; radio equipment and electromagnetic compatibility (EMC).
“So far a handful of Swedish companies have shown an interest in getting accredited to work within the agreement. More companies may show an interest in accreditation when more product areas come up for accredited testing and certification”, says Tomas Holm at Swedac’s industrial unit.
In most cases, the product groups falling within the scope of the agreement have high potential for export, such as electronics, toys and machinery. Other product groups may be brought within the scope of the agreement in the future.