Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Nova Scotia Wants to Replicate Chinese Trade Success with Europe

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Nova Scotia Wants to Replicate Chinese Trade Success with Europe

Article excerpt

N.S. looks to grow exports to Europe

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HALIFAX - Nova Scotia has turned its trade focus to growing its European exports through a new strategy that builds on successful efforts to boost trade with China.

Premier Stephen McNeil said Thursday that although the Nova Scotia-Europe Engagement Strategy sets no targets, the idea is to grow trade and investment opportunities with the European Union, which is the province's third largest export market after the United States and China.

McNeil said there is an opportunity to expand ties established through the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) which came into force in 2017, despite the current unrest between the European Union and Great Britain over Brexit.

"We know that is a challenging situation for those going in, but that is not a reason to stay away," he said. "Potentially we will have two marketplaces to deal with, but we can do that."

In 2018 Nova Scotia exported $597-million worth of goods to Europe including seafood, berries, wood and energy products.

However, the European market has remained relatively flat over the last 10 years, accounting for between nine and 12 per cent of Nova Scotia's international exports, according to the province.

McNeil said while his government will do what it can to smooth the way, it's up to the province's companies to seize opportunities.

"Without you this doesn't work," he said. "With you I think we'll surpass even our wildest dreams about the potential for this relationship to continue to grow."

The government said the strategy will look to increase exports through research and development partnerships, immigration, tourism revenue, and investment.

Meanwhile, McNeil said he will lead a trade mission between April 29 and May 15 that will include stops in Ireland, Holland, Portugal, Belgium, and France before moving on to Guangdong province in China. …

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