Prime Minister Stephen Harper and European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso shake hands after signing an agreement in principle on trade earlier this month at the European Commission in Brussels, Belgium Adrian Wyld/ Canadian Press
A tentative free trade agreement between Canada and the European Union that has been praised by exporters but drawn criticism from some dairy farmers will be tabled in the House of Commons in Ottawa today.
The tabling of the tentative pact Tuesday afternoon was first reported by CBC's national affairs editor Chris Hall.
The Prime Minister's Office has been sending out invitations to industry groups and business executives to witness the tabling of the tentative Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA).
Prime Minister Stephen Harper, who described the agreement as a "historic win for Canada," signed the tentative deal in Brussels on Oct. 18, alongside European Commission president Jose Manual Barroso.
The agreement would provide Canada with preferential market access to the 28-member European Union, and its more than 500 million consumers and $17 trillion in annual economic activity.
The agreement still needs to be fine-tuned and full ratification most likely won't happen for another two years.
But the agreement is expected to be a boon for Canadian exporters by providing full access to EU markets by removing 98 per cent of EU tariffs on a wide range of Canadian products, including agricultural and grain, seafood and metals and mineral products.
The deal would also allow Canadian automakers to export more cars and Canadian farmers to export more beef, pork and bison.
Once in place, Canadian consumers could also see cheaper prices on items that include food, wines and high-end European cars
While a number of export industries have given the deal high praise, some dairy farmers and cheese producers have expressed concerns.
The deal would allow the EU to sell Canada 29,000 tonnes of cheese, a rise from the current 13,000 tonnes. Some farmers fear those provisions could threaten jobs and industries in Canada.