Canada assured that Britain supports EU free trade deal

TORONTO (AP) — Canada’s international trade minister says Britain has assured Canada it will push for speedy ratification of a new trade deal with the European Union, despite its intention to leave the 28-country bloc.

Chrystia Freeland said Wednesday that she has received assurances from her British counterpart, Lord Mark Price, and that he’s conveyed those same assurances to their EU counterparts.

The European Union is urging member states to back the deal after taking the unusual step of allowing national parliaments to ratify the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement.

Britain’s decision to leave the EU last month is one of many factors complicating the ratification of the pact.

EU Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstroem has said the deal would boost growth and jobs in Europe.

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