Strengthening links with Canadian civil society

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Closer cooperation between the EESC and the Mission of Canada to the EU and current developments on implementing the EU-Canada Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) – these were the topics of the meeting between Daniel J. Costello, Ambassador of Canada to the European Union and Jacek Krawczyk, President of the EESC Employers' Group and President of the Transatlantic Relations Follow-up Committee, held on 24 of May at the EESC premises.

Mr Krawczyk explained the activities of the Follow-Up Committee for Transatlantic Relations and reported that the EESC intended to organise a mission to Canada in the autumn. This would be an opportunity to renew contacts with Canadian civil society and to discuss how civil society could effectively monitor the implementation of CETA and other future agreements.

Ambassador Costello welcomed the declaration and emphasised that the mission would be also an excellent opportunity to explain how civil society operated in the EU and to increase knowledge about the EU in general. The Ambassador was invited to attend the meeting of the EESC's External Relations Section to present the Canadian government's priorities, including issues such as climate change, migration, national security and multilateral relations.

The EESC Transatlantic Relations Follow-up Committee was set up in November 2015 following the enlargement of the EU-US Follow-up Committee to cover Canada, and in particular relations with Canadian civil society and implementation of the EU-Canada trade agreement.