Impacts of CETA on Sustainability of Northern Tip Coastal Communities

Daly, Jack and Chuenpagdee, Ratana (2019) Impacts of CETA on Sustainability of Northern Tip Coastal Communities. Research Report. Memorial University of Newfoundland, St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador.

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The main objective of this research project was to contextualize the Canada-EU Comprehensive Economic & Trade Agreement (CETA) for the fisheries of the Great Northern Peninsula (GNP), Newfoundland and Labrador. This research was first discussed in a regional engagement session in December 2017 in St. Anthony where it received final approval from community partners (Harris Centre, 2017). Assessing the impact of CETA on the coastal communities and fisheries of the GNP was accomplished through a two-pronged approach. First, an institutional assessment, informed by a governance perspective analyzed CETA as an institution in the governing system of the region, looking at the extent of compatibility between the agreement and current fisheries management policies. Second, fieldwork was completed in the GNP to capture initial responses to the agreement. There were two main findings of this research. First, it was found through an institutional assessment that CETA impacts the governing system of the region through its principle of ‘national treatment’ which enables market access. Although CETA increases access to one of the largest seafood import markets globally by reducing tariffs on key seafood products (i.e., Northern shrimp, snow crab, Northern cod), the ‘national treatment’ principle contributes to the phase out of a domestic fisheries policy, the provincial minimum processing requirement (MPR). This phase-out has been pointed to as a potential threat to coastal communities (Sabau & Boksh, 2017, Song & Chuenpagdee, 2015), and this research suggests that it contributes to one of multiple external stressors enacted on seafood processing plants. Second, through interviews carried out with local and non-local informants, it was found that there were three major aspects of CETA that initially impacted communities. These aspects are the reduction and elimination of tariffs for seafood products destined to the EU, the provincial MPR phase-out, and the joint provincial-federal funding scheme, the Atlantic Fisheries Fund (AFF). Although tariff phase-outs were initially considered to be positive as it represented easier access to the EU market, the MPR phase-out was incompatible with local goals of processing sector viability, and the AFF was seen as inadequate to address the long-term problems in the fishery and processing sector. The report is structured as follows. First, it presents a summary of key findings. Second, a background of the study area is presented, followed by rationale, objectives, and methodology. Next, CETA is described in relation to fisheries policy and seafood trade. Following this the results of the research are presented. The report concludes with a summary of the research as well as a brief report on the Research Engagement Session held after the completion of the research in July 2019.

Item Type: Report (Research Report)
Item ID: 13982
Additional Information: 2017-2018 SNCC Applied Research Fund
Department(s): Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of > Geography
Divisions > The Harris Centre
Date: July 2019
Date Type: Publication
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