MacManus welcomes new blow to CETA agreement
Chris MacManus, Sinn Féin MEP for the Midlands North West, has welcomed the Cypriot Parliament’ rejection of CETA last week.
“What we seen last week in Cyprus was democracy in action. The deal was reviewed and rejected, on the basis it posed a grave threat to small and medium businesses, particularity in the agricultural sector.
“This is in stark contrast to what happened in Ireland. In 2017, after CETA was rejected in the Seanad, the Government blocked requests for a Dáil debate.
“Instead, it decided to go ahead and implement the agreement, saying we would vote after seeing its effect. This was a complete departure from democratic norms.
“I believe CETA is a bad deal for Irish farmers. Some say the 50,000t allocation of Canadian beef would not sink the market, but this must be viewed as a piece of the puzzle.
“A few months ago a 99,000t allocation was granted to the Mercosur counties, and we have an upcoming agreement with New Zealand, where more concessions will be made.
“Collapse of the EU agricultural sector by a number of small periodic blows does not change the devastating outcome. The COVID 19 pandemic has demonstrated why local production and supply chains must be protected.
“Sinn Féin believes trade is essential to our future but it must be fair. Key sectors such as agriculture must be protected from over exposure. A failure to do this not only hurts our farmers but the network of rural communities that depend on them.
“Sinn Féin will continue to oppose any trade deals, which risk the future of our family farms and our rural committees”. ENDS