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EU court says Singapore trade deal needs national ratification

Reuters  |  BRUSSELS 

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - The top ruled on Tuesday that a free agreement between the European Union and cannot fully enter force until ratified by all countries, in a legal opinion that could slow down other planned deals.

The European Union hopes to seal agreements with Japan, Mexico and the Mercosur quartet of Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay and crucially will also have to forge a deal with post-Brexit Britain in the coming years.

The European Commission and completed negotiations on a deal in October 2014.

The Commission, which negotiates deals on behalf of the EU's 28 members, has previously argued that is an exclusive competence, meaning an agreement would not have to wait for years and risk being blocked during ratification by all the members.

Such deals would still need clearance by the Council, the grouping of governments, and the European Parliament.

An EU-Canada deal is set to enter force provisionally in the coming weeks after facing waves of protest from labour unions and environmental groups. It was nearly scuppered by a Belgian region and still needs clearance by national and regional parliaments in the coming years to be fully enter force.

(Reporting By Philip Blenkinsop; editing by Alastair Macdonald)

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)