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Green Party seek postponement on Ceta Dail vote

The party wants a full debate to be held.

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A general view of the Toronto skyline (Danny Lawson/PA)

A general view of the Toronto skyline (Danny Lawson/PA)

A general view of the Toronto skyline (Danny Lawson/PA)

The Green Party has requested a Dail vote on the controversial EU-Canada deal be postponed to allow for a full debate at another time.

It comes amid opposition from party members and some Green Party TDs over Tuesday’s vote.

A spokesperson for the party confirmed it is seeking the Dail motion to be postponed to allow for further public debate on the issue.

The motion to ratify the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (Ceta) was due to take place on Tuesday at 4pm.

Green Party TDs Neasa Hourigan and Patrick Costello told the party leadership they would not back the motion.

Mr Costello said delaying the motion was “the least we can do to address the issues”.

The Ceta trade deal between the EU and Canada removes most trade barriers on imports between both regions.

It has been ratified by some EU member states, however it has faced opposition in Ireland.

Critics of the deal have raised concerns over the investor court system, which will allow corporations to sue the Irish government for discriminatory practices and regulations that impact their profits.

Opponents of the deal also say it could harm workers’ rights and regulations brought in to tackle environmental problems.

The Green Party has campaigned against the deal for years.

This trade agreement makes a mockery of a Just Transition and a Green New DealLynn Boylan

Sinn Fein Senator Lynn Boylan accused the government of “sneaking through” the ratification of the Ceta trade agreement.

Speaking at Leinster House, she said: “Voting to ratify Ceta would be massively damaging to any hopes of tackling the climate crisis in a fair way.

“Just 100 companies are responsible for 71% of emissions.

“Governments need to be challenging the power of corporations in order to fight the climate crisis.

“This trade deal would hinder that.

“Ceta would let companies sue the government, and Irish taxpayers, for billions if we brought in regulations to deal with all the environmental problems we face.

“The consequence is that the burden of tackling climate change lands on ordinary people while corporations go on polluting as they please.

“This trade agreement makes a mockery of a Just Transition and a Green New Deal.

“It also threatens the Government’s promise to ban fracked gas imports and puts in doubt the enactment of the climate emergency bill.

“This trade agreement is from another era.

“It was written before the Paris Climate Agreement and doesn’t reflect the scale of the climate crisis.

“There can be no place for private investor courts.”

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