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November 15, 2017

Make Brexit better than Canadian free trade agreement, Scottish institute argues

By Federica Tedeschi

The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland (ICAS) has urged the UK Government to secure a better Brexit deal than the new Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) struck between Canada and the EU.

CETA provisionally entered into force in September with the aim of easing export of goods and services to the benefit of people and businesses in both the EU and Canada.

However, the independent report CETA, Brexit and Beyond by James Ogilvy which ICAS commissioned from Canadian experts close to the CETA negotiations, highlighted a number of subject areas that are covered by CETA and has related them to the circumstances of the UK and in particular the fact that the CETA deal only secures temporary entry for professional services into Europe.

ICAS Executive Director of Policy Bruce Cartwright said: “The British negotiating team needs to learn from the Canada experience and deliver a deal which goes considerably beyond CETA. We also believe that the evidence laid out in this ICAS commissioned report could be crucial in reducing the length of time it takes to strike a deal by providing pointers to where agreed elements of CETA could be lifted and applied to Brexit. In particular, it comes up short on services, which make up a substantial and valuable part of the UK economy.”

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