10:46 GMT +325 April 2019
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    Wallonia's socialist government head Paul Magnette (L) and European Parliament President Martin Schulz hold a joint press conference after their meeting regarding CETA (EU-Canada Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement) at the European Parliament in Brussels on October 22, 2016

    EU Wants Belgium’s Wallonia to Make Decision on CETA by Late Monday

    © AFP 2019 / NICOLAS MAETERLINCK
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    The European Union is waiting for the decision of the French-speaking Belgium’s region of Wallonia on the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) with Canada, according to local media.

    BRUSSELS (Sputnik) – The European Union expects the government of the French-speaking Belgium’s region of Wallonia to make a decision on the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) with Canada by late Monday, local media reported on Sunday.

    If the Wallonia’s government fails to support CETA until late Monday, the European Union will cancel an EU-Canada Summit scheduled for October 27, when the parties planned to sign the treaty, the Contact radio broadcaster reported.

    EU officials are said to exert pressure on Minister-President of Wallonia Paul Magnette so that he gives a green light to signing CETA. The EU Commission is reportedly holding a meeting with Magnette.

    On Saturday, Magnette told European Parliament President Martin Schulz that he was not yet ready to make a final decision on the issue, claiming that the agreement still needs time to be thought through.

    CETA aims to establish a free trade zone between Canada and the European Union, scrapping more than 98 percent of the existing tariffs between Ottawa and Brussels. Opponents fear it would undermine standards and regulations on environmental protection, health, safety and workers' rights.

    Related:

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    EU Needs More Time to Discuss CETA Deal With Canada - Wallonia's Head
    Belgium's Wallonia Reiterates Opposition to CETA Deal With Canada
    Brussels Regional Parliament Likely to Follow Wallonia's Case, Reject CETA
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    Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), European Union, Wallonia, Belgium, Canada
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