Update on Modernization of the Canada-Israel Free Trade Agreement (CIFTA)

The Minister of International Trade recently welcomed the royal assent of Bill C-85: An Act to amend the Canada-Israel Free Trade Agreement Implementation Act and to make related amendments to other Acts.

Once in force, the modernized Canada-Israel Free Trade Agreement (CIFTA) will reduce tariffs, ease border restrictions on goods, increase transparency around regulations, reduce red tape, and help small and medium-sized enterprises generate more business in both countries.

With both Canada and Israel having now completed their domestic ratification processes, the two countries will proceed to establish a date for the entry into force of the modernized agreement.

  • Once in force, the modernized CIFTA will increase market access by further reducing and eliminating tariffs on Canadian exports to the Israeli market, including new and improved market access for virtually 100% of Canadian exports of agricultural, agri-food and fish and seafood products.
  • The new chapters were added to help address non-tariff barriers, contribute to facilitating trade, make trade more predictable and help reduce red tape and some of the costs to companies.
  • The new chapters cover e-commerce, intellectual property, labour, environment, sanitary and phytosanitary measures, technical barriers to trade and trade facilitation.
  • New chapters were also added on gender and SMEs, which seek to ensure that the benefits and opportunities that flow from trade and investment are more widely shared, as well as an article promoting corporate social responsibility.

The modernized CIFTA will take effect on the date that it enters into force, which could occur in 2019.

More information on the modernized Canada-Israel Free Trade Agreement and text is available.