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  • 28 Jul 2020 11:57 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    CUSMA, the Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement, came into effect on July 1st, replacing NAFTA. In Canada, it’s called CUSMA but in the US, it’s USMCA (United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement) and TMEC (Tratato Mexico-Estados Unidos-Canada) in Mexico.


    With the exception of new Chapters on labour, e-commerce, SME’s and the environment, CUSMA is a cut-and-paste copy of NAFTA. The automobile industry is the most affected, as its rules of origin are more demanding, with higher percentages of North American content, new Labour Value Content rules, and a new requirement to use 70% of North-American steel and aluminium. Some of these new requirements are phased-in over several years. There are also minor changes in the rules of origin for garments, chemicals and cosmetics. For dairy, poultry and egg products, Canada has managed to maintain its supply management system, which the US wanted dismantled, but had to open the door to more US products, representing 3.6% of the Canadian market. No change regarding customs processes, with the exception of the NAFTA Certificate of Origin form replaced by an Origin Certification similar to the CETA one, though more detailed. And the Origin Certification can now be issued by the importer, which is a novel, unusual provision.

    The new Agreement is great news for Canada and it’s also good news for European firms already active or interested in the Canadian market, as it provides stability to the Canadian economy. And for a European exporter selling in Canada, serving the US market from a Canadian distribution center is both efficient and economical. Thanks to CETA, European products enter Canada free of customs duties. They can be re-exported and enter the US free of duty if they don’t exceed the US$800 ‘’de minimis’’ limit, an ideal tool for B2C and e-commerce. The proximity of the US border also makes it easy to set-up a reverse logistics system to receive and consolidate any returns.

    You can read the full article here.

  • 22 Jun 2020 16:13 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    When we think of CETA we often think of elimination or reduction of barriers in the trade of goods and services (tariff and non-tariff), or investment opportunities. But CETA is also a great opportunity for companies in the EU to participate in government procurement processes, not only to the general procurement for federal departments and ministries, but also, to those of the provinces and territories. 

    This publication focuses on procurement opportunities for EU companies that do not carry on their business in Canada through a corporation.

    You will get keys and detailed process methods to contract with Federal government but also with provincial governments and specifically Ontario and Quebec. You can download the publication here.

  • 16 Jun 2020 15:59 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The evolution of artificial intelligence (AI) represents one of the greatest technological transformations of our age. AI is radically changing the way people live, work and play. International and multistakeholder collaboration are critical to the responsible use and development of AI based on shared values such as human rights, diversity, inclusion, innovation, and economic growth for all.

    In this spirit, the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry, along with representatives of the 14 other founding members of the Global Partnership on Artificial Intelligence (GPAI), today announced the official launch of this initiative. "In launching GPAI, the Government of Canada recognizes the need for the responsible development of AI. This builds on our Government's Pan-Canadian AI strategy to advance AI research and promote collaboration. Our partnership with Quebec in this area will help us ensure that AI benefits Canadians in an equitable and socially responsible way. By connecting the work of GPAI with the technological innovations of Montréal's AI sector and by establishing partnerships with the provinces and territories, we will produce useful research and expertise for governments around the world." said Minister Bains.

    In the wake of this international launch, the Government of Canada is also joining with the Government of Quebec to advance the responsible development of AI. Minister Bains, along with Nadine Girault, Quebec's Minister of International Relations and La Francophonie, announced the opening of the International Centre of Expertise in Montréal for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (ICEMAI) as well as the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) under GPAI. "Quebec, and particularly the Montréal metropolitan area, is world-renowned in artificial intelligence research. The large university community, distinguished researchers, innovative companies, and numerous public and private investments in this rapidly growing ecosystem make it a trusted and recognized leader. The recent signing of the memorandum of understanding between the governments of Quebec and Canada sets out Quebec's role within the Global Partnership on Artificial Intelligence and demonstrates Quebec's indisputable leadership in the responsible development of AI. The Government of Quebec, working with the federal government and GPAI member states, will actively contribute to the advancement of AI to benefit humanity. Today, I am pleased to announce the opening of the International Centre of Expertise in Montréal for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence, which will play a key role in GPAI." said Minister Nadine Girault.

    GPAI will facilitate international and multi-stakeholder collaboration by bringing together experts from industry, civil society, governments, and academia. It will conduct activities across four themes, including two supported by the Montréal Centre of Expertise: Responsible AI and Data Governance. A corresponding Centre of Excellence in Paris will support the other two themes: Future of Work and Innovation & Commercialization. In light of the current pandemic, GPAI will also investigate how AI can be leveraged to respond to and recover from COVID-19.

    Several Canadian experts will contribute to the cutting-edge research and activities of GPAI's Working Groups on these themes, including Yoshua Bengio, Founder and Scientific Director of the Mila research institute in artificial intelligence, who will co-chair the Working Group on Responsible AI.

    International Centre of Expertise in Montréal for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence

    The ICEMAI, whose creation is being led by Montréal International, will be one of GPAI's two international Centres of Expertise, along with the Paris Centre of Expertise. The Centres will work closely with the GPAI Secretariat, which will be hosted at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). In addition to its thematic work, the ICEMAI will also plan the first annual GPAI Multistakeholder Experts Group Plenary, to be held in Montréal in December 2020.

    The ICEMAI will work with the Government of Canada's Advisory Council on Artificial Intelligence, Forum IA Québec, and the International Observatory on the Societal Impacts of Artificial Intelligence and Digital Technologies, as well as with experts from Quebec, Canada, and around the world to strengthen innovation and the commercialization of AI technologies.

    Signing of a memorandum of understanding on GPAI

    Ministers Bains and Girault also made public a MOU between the governments of Canada and Quebec on GPAI. Modelled on the Canada-Quebec Agreement on UNESCO, the MOU is the result of excellent cooperation between the two governments. It will enable Quebec to highlight the important role of its AI ecosystem, specifically in the area of responsible development of AI, and to take its place internationally as an essential partner and subject-matter expert. As an active participant in Canada's activities in GPAI, Quebec will be able to advance its scientific perspectives and recommend experts to GPAI's Working Groups.

    The MOU will also allow Quebec to participate in GPAI-related activities. The governments of Canada and Quebec will continue to involve and closely collaborate with other provincial and territorial governments to ensure Canada's work draws from the strong expertise in AI found from coast to coast.

    Beginning in 2018, the governments of Canada and Quebec recognized the importance of these international developments. In March 2018, the Government of Quebec announced a $5-million grant to set up an international AI organization in Montréal or attract one to the city. The federal government had previously committed to investing up to $10 million over five years to support the Montréal Centre of Expertise and GPAI. The total amount of the investment will be up to $15 million over five years.

    For more information and details of investments, visit here.
  • 15 Jun 2020 16:28 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Many of our members conduct business with the UK. Thanks to our 'sister' organisation, the Netherlands British Chamber of Commerce (NBCC), for sharing this important update.

    Following the meeting of the Withdrawal Agreement Joint Committee on Friday, the UK has formally notified the EU that it will neither accept or seek any extension to the Transition Period ending on 31 December 2020.

    However, coronavirus has had an unprecedented impact on all aspects of life, and because of this the UK Government is introducing border controls in stages for EU goods imported into GB, to give businesses more time to prepare.

    The stages are as follows:
    From January 2021: Traders importing standard goods, covering everything from clothes to electronics, will need to prepare for basic customs requirements, such as keeping sufficient records of imported goods, and will have up to six months to complete customs declarations. While tariffs will need to be paid on all imports, payments can be deferred until the customs declaration has been made. There will be checks on controlled goods like alcohol and tobacco. Businesses will also need to consider how they account for VAT on imported goods. There will also be physical checks at the point of destination or other approved premises on all high risk live animals and plants.

    From April 2021: All products of animal origin (POAO) – for example meat, pet food, honey, milk or egg products – and all regulated plants and plant products will also require pre-notification and the relevant health documentation.

    From July 2021: Traders moving all goods will have to make declarations at the point of importation and pay relevant tariffs. Full Safety and Security declarations will be required, while for SPS commodities there will be an increase in physical checks and the taking of samples: checks for animals, plants and their products will now take place at GB Border Control Posts.

    To support businesses with the new processes taking effect next year, the UK Government has developed a new £50m package to boost the capacity of customs intermediaries – including customs brokers, freight forwarders and express parcel operators – providing businesses with further support. This funding will support intermediaries with recruitment, training and supplying IT equipment to help handle customs declarations. Rules will also be changed to remove barriers for intermediaries taking on new clients.

    Additionally, The UK Government has committed to building new border facilities in Great Britain for carrying out required checks, such as customs compliance, transit, and Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) checks, as well as providing targeted support to ports to build new infrastructure. The UK Government is consulting with ports across the UK to agree what infrastructure is required.

    More information can be found here.

  • 04 Jun 2020 10:55 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Information in English on COVID-19

    Travel to the Netherlands possible from 15 June 2020. Initially, borders will be open only to tourists from 12 EU countries. Information in English is available at the following page.

    Vragen over coronavirus voor ondernemers

    Het coronavirus roept vragen op bij Nederlandse ondernemers over de lange- en kortetermijngevolgen, maar ook over bijvoorbeeld geplande handelsmissies.

    Op deze pagina van Rijksoverheid.nl vindt u veelgestelde vragen over het coronavirus voor werkgevers en ondernemers en over financiële regelingen.

    Gevolgen voor ondernemers en handelsmissies

    Het coronavirus en de maatregelen die het kabinet heeft genomen, raken heel Nederland. Welke impact heeft dit op de diensten en werkzaamheden van RVO? Lees meer hierover via deze pagina.

    Wilt u weten welke handelsmissies zijn afgelast of uitgesteld? Dan kunt u via deze pagina een overzicht vinden van alle geplande handelsmissies, zowel inkomend als uitgaand, met daarbij een vermelding van de huidige status.

    Gevolgen op internationaal zakendoen per land

    RVO heeft in samenwerking met Buitenlandse Zaken en het internationale netwerk van ambassades en consulaten-generaal voor een aantal landen een lijst met veelgestelde vragen opgesteld. Momenteel is er een overzicht van veelgestelde vragen over het coronavirus en het effect op zakendoen in: België, Canada, China, Denemarken, Duitsland, Frankrijk, Italië, Polen, Singapore, Spanje, Verenigde Staten, Verenigd Koninkrijk en Zuid-Korea. Ook is er informatie over landen in Afrika, Azië en Oceanië en de eilanden Bonaire, Saba en Sint Eustatius.

    Voor meer informatie, bezoek deze pagina.

  • 02 Jun 2020 09:39 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    On May 22, the port of Rotterdam was able to celebrate a Dutch premier: the aerial delivery by drone of a parts consignment to Allseas’ Pioneering Spirit, the biggest vessel in the world. Pioneering Spirit is currently moored at Alexiahaven in preparation of upcoming offshore activities. This is actually the first drone delivery ever made in the Netherlands to a vessel.

    This pilot project, which was set up by Dutch Drone Delta, Allseas and the Port of Rotterdam Authority, is intended to determine whether and how drone deliveries could increase transport efficiency in the port of Rotterdam. The airspace over the port area will be safely managed under the slogan ‘Rotterdam, the safest port to fly’, allowing parties to take optimal advantage of new technologies to make the port safer, smarter and more efficient.

    Drone evolution

    The Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) industry is going through an exciting evolution, and the sector is primed for further growth. Drone development is in full swing and this technology can have a major impact on traffic and transport. New European regulations have cleared the way for new applications. Ultimately, this may even include autonomous unmanned freight and passenger transport. To this end, the next few years will be devoted to the phased preparation of airspace and drone technology. The recent delivery constitutes a major first step in this process, since it involved the delivery of an actual package following a long-distance flight by the UAV. While in this case, the delivery was still directly monitored by human observers, in the near future, it will be handled entirely beyond the pilot’s physical line of sight.

    Read the full article on the Port of Rotterdam website.

  • 06 May 2020 01:07 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Between 1944 and 1945, the Canadian Army was given the important yet deadly task of liberating the Netherlands. Told through the eyes of Canadian Lieutenant Wilf Gildersleeve of the Seaforth Highlanders and of Marguerite Blaisse, a Dutch civilian, this Heritage Minute commemorates the sacrifice of Canadians who fought and celebrates the bond formed between Canada and the Netherlands.

    The Heritage Minutes are a collection of bilingual Canadian 60-second short films, each depicting a significant person, event or story in Canadian history. First released in 1991, they have been shown on television, in cinemas and online, and have become a part of Canadian culture.

    For more information about the liberation of the Netherlands, please visit: https://thecanadianencyclopedia.ca/en...

    Credits:

    Lieutenant Wilf Gildersleeve – Frédéric Millaire-Zouvi
    Marguerite Blaisse – Jenna Wheeler
    End Narration – Peter Mansbridge

    Director – François Gingras
    Director of Photography – Jean-Pierre Gauthier

    Producer – Sébastien Pigeon
    Produced by Aetios Productions Inc.

  • 30 Apr 2020 09:56 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    By rail, by water or road? Many companies are just happy to have their goods moved from A to B in the same old way. But which is better for the environment, warehouse utilization and the bottom line? Sports company Deventrade decided to put this to the test and transported their shipment by inland vessel instead of by road. ‘The amount of work entailed in this was a lot less than I expected’ said logistics manager Erik Jonker.

    Deventrade BV is a Deventer-based family company founded in 1985 and now one of the prominent suppliers of sportswear and sports accessories in the Benelux. The assortment includes brands like Hummel, ball brand Derbystar (Official Supplier of the Dutch Premier League) and Stanno (volleyball, goalie gloves) as well as Reece Australia (hockey). The family company annually imports about 100 to 125 containers with these products from China, Pakistan and Turkey, among other countries, which are subsequently distributed to more than 700 specialty sports stores and various sports clubs in the Netherlands, as well as to 4,000 sports stores abroad.

    Pilot

    The containers are brought in via the port of Rotterdam and subsequently are moved by truck to the 13,500 m2 warehouse and shipping facility in Deventer. However, transport by inland waterway also has its charms, which persuaded logistics manager Erik Jonker to set up a pilot for transport by inland vessel. Jonker was given advice in this pilot by Bureau Voorlichting Binnenvaart (Inland Navigation Promotion)’s Miranda Volker. She used a provincial project aimed at stimulating transport by water in order to research some details and get going.

    Cheaper

    The vessel sailed with ten containers to the container terminal in Hengelo, since containers cannot be unloaded in Deventer. The ‘last mile’ (from Hengelo to Deventer) was still negotiated by lorry. And? ‘Road transport between Rotterdam and Deventer is relatively expensive compared to the sea voyage from China to the Netherlands. Transport by inland vessel is cheaper’ according to Jonker. Another advantage is the flexibility of delivery. ‘I can arrange with the terminal that the container delivery is distributed over a longer period at our warehouse, without this entailing all kinds of additional costs.’ Moreover, it should be clear that transport by water results in less traffic on the road and also less CO2 emission. The drawbacks? Transport by inland vessel is a little slower. A container coming from the port of Rotterdam by lorry will already arrive here the next day. Inland vessels do not sail every day. However, this is not a problem to us. We take this into account in the schedule.’

    New world

    In conclusion, the benefits compensate for the drawbacks. Thus Jonker intends to start transporting more often by inland vessel. ‘Do not let anything stop you from tackling the unknown. Transport by inland vessel was a relatively new world for me, but the amount of work entailed in this was a lot less than I expected. So let’s just do it!’

  • 22 Apr 2020 07:57 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The Netherlands’ approach is essentially to control the virus as much as possible in order to protect vulnerable groups. If we manage this, we can move step by step towards having more freedom in a 1.5-metre society.

    The basic measures are: stay at home as much as possible, work from home if you can and keep 1.5 metres away from others. If we all do this, we can slowly create scope to relax the current measures. That will be the result of all our efforts. Complying with the measures in place means we can start taking small steps forward.

    The government has extended most measures until 19 May inclusive. Primary schools, including special primary schools, and childcare centres for children aged 0 to 4 and childminders will reopen on 11 May. From 29 April children and teenagers will have more scope for participating in organised sports activities and play outdoors. The ban on events that require a permit has been extended to 1 September 2020.

    In the weeks ahead various sectors will make plans for how they could reopen fully or partially in a 1.5-metre society.

    See here for more details.

  • 01 Apr 2020 10:30 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The government decided today that all measures taken in the Netherlands to combat coronavirus will be extended until Tuesday 28 April inclusive. In the week before 28 April, the government will assess what measures are necessary in the period after that date. The government urges people to stay at home during the Easter weekend.

    The extension means that sports facilities, establishments serving food and drink, childcare centres and other locations will remain closed until 28 April inclusive. Schools will remain closed until at least the end of the May school holidays. The ban on events still applies until 1 June.

    Extending the measures was necessary in order to control the spread of coronavirus, protect people in vulnerable groups and ensure that healthcare professionals and hospitals can handle the great pressure they face. Before it can be said with certainty that the epidemic is under control and the measures can therefore be reconsidered, there must be sufficient evidence that the number of hospital admissions is falling and that intensive care units have the necessary capacity.

    The Netherlands still has a long way to go. But we are headed in the right direction. The number of coronavirus patients is still increasing, but at a lower rate than it was several weeks ago, before any measures were announced. Anyone who currently has the virus is infecting fewer people on average than they would have been if no measures had been taken. This means that the measures are working. It will take several weeks before this translates into a fall in the number of coronavirus patients in hospitals. After all, there is a period of time between someone being infected, becoming ill and – in some cases – being admitted to hospital.

    What is important now is that everyone in the Netherlands continues to follow the measures. The risk of infection is still high. Compliance with the measures is crucial. Together, we’ll get corona under control.

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