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NDP's McCurdy laments lack of serious CETA consultation in N.L.

NDP Leader Earle McCurdy says the public deserves answers about the Muskrat Falls hydroelectric development.
NDP Leader Earle McCurdy says the public deserves answers about the Muskrat Falls hydroelectric development.

NDP Leader Earle McCurdy took aim at the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) as it went into effect on Thursday. 

Meaningful consultations on the new trade agreement between Canada and the European Union should have been held in the province so people could be aware of the potential consequences of the deal, he said in a news release.

McCurdy said the agreement’s investor rights provisions put the interests of private corporations ahead of those of governments and the public.

CETA gives corporations the right to sue governments for actions aimed at protecting citizens, he claimed.

He also criticized the provincial government for “cheerleading” the agreement’s implementation. The province sent out a news release earlier today praising the potential economic benefits the agreement will have for businesses.

SEE RELATED: N.L. government hypes CETA as deal takes effect

“This arrangement opens up procurement for huge multinational corporations,” McCurdy said.

“The full negative impact of CETA on the local business community needs to be understood and addressed.”

McCurdy says there should have been an open and transparent debate about the deal in the province before it was signed.

“One of the main potential advantages associated with CETA was the commitment by the previous federal government to a cost-shared $400-million fisheries fund,” he said.

“Unfortunately, the Liberal government let the federal government off the hook and settled for a share of a $100-million fund available to the four Atlantic provinces.”

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