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Talks wrap up on Canada/Jordan FTA

The federal government says it’s concluded its negotiations toward a free trade agreement (FTA) with Jordan that would benefit Canadian pulse growers among other sectors.

International Trade Minister Michael Fortier announced Tuesday that the talks had concluded during their third round in Amman on Monday. “This bilateral free trade agreement will open up significant opportunities for Canadian companies in this growing economy, as well as elsewhere in the Middle East and North Africa,” he said in a release.

In the next step before signing the agreements and making them public, Canada and Jordan each plan to undertake a detailed legal review of the FTA texts. Once formally signed, the treaties go to the House of Commons for 21 days of review and debate, after which the government would introduce draft legislation to implement the agreements.

Once implemented, the government said Tuesday, this FTA would eliminate tariffs on the “vast majority” of current Canadian exports to Jordan.

Canadian exports to Jordan totalled $60 million in 2007, up from $31 million in 2003, the government said. Canada’s top exports to Jordan were forest products, electrical machinery and agricultural and agri-food products, led by pulse crops.

Including imports from Jordan worth $16 million, bilateral trade in 2007 totalled $76 million, the government said.

Jordan is the third country this year with which Canada has concluded bilateral FTA talks, after Colombia and Peru.

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