Greek exporters of feta cheese will benefit from the CETA trade agreement between the EU and Canada for four reasons, the president of the Hellenic-Canadian Chamber of Commerce (HCCC) Konstantinos Katsigiannis said on Monday.
Katsigiannis was speaking at a conference organised by the Thessaloniki Chamber of Commerce and Industry (TCCI) and the Exporters Association of Northern Greece (SEVE), under the auspices of the Canadian Embassy.
Firstly, CETA prohibits the sale on the Canadian market any product labelled “Greek feta” or bearing any sign, symbol, image and name that refers to Greece, unless it is made in Greece.
Secondly, there will be a clear indication that these products have been produced in Canada and, thirdly, with the exception of the older feta producers, new producers will have to label their products “feta-type cheese” or “feta-imitation cheese”.
Lastly, Greek-made feta is high on the list of Canadians’ preferences, due to its excellent quality.
Dan Kelly, chairman of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) with a membership of 109,000 small and medium-sized businesses, pointed out that Canadian businessmen are now open to this agreement and hence to their cooperation with European companies, especially due to the uncertain future of the NAFTA trade agreement, following the statements made by US President Donald Trump about its revision and the likelihood of its dissolution.
President of SEVE, Dr Kyriakos Loufakis said that Greek exports to Canada reached 137 million euros, down 3 pct, on a year-on-year basis. However, he said that the prospects of further development of bialteral trade between the two countries are good.
Senior Trade Commissioner of the Canadian Embassy, David Mallette, spoke about CETA’s “multifariousness”, noting that in addition to the 99% elimination of both sides’ duties (94% for agricultural products), the agreement will bring about changes to the imports process, the development of bilateral relations in the service sectors – financial services, telecommunications – in shipping and more generally in all areas of trade, services and investment.