From a Canadian news report:
A trade deal between Canada and the European Union could restrict Canada’s wine sales by limiting the number of privately run outlets selling domestic products, if a leaked document turns out to be close to the finalized treaty.
A German website posted the 521-page document this week, and claims it’s a copy of the trade agreement between Canada and the EU. You can find the entire document below.
Last fall, Prime Minister Stephen Harper travelled to Brussels, where he reached a tentative agreement, the details of which have yet to be formally outlined by either Canada or the EU.
If the leaked document is accurate, the trade agreement will clamp down on the expansion of Canada’s wine sales by limiting the number of privately run wine outlets in Ontario and B.C. that only sell Canadian products.
The text of the leaked document states that there “shall not exceed 292 (private outlets) in Ontario and 60 in British Columbia.” Those limits have already been reached in those provinces, suggesting restrictions on opening any new stores that sell local wines.
Here's the full language, from pp. 15-16 of the leaked CETA text:
Article 2(2)(b) of the 1989 Agreement, as amended by Annex VIII to the 2003 Agreement, shall be replaced by the following:
(b) - requiring off site private wine store outlets in Ontario and British Columbia to sell only wines produced by Canadian wineries. The number of these off site private wine store outlets authorised to sell only wines produced by Canadian wineries in these provinces shall not exceed 292 in Ontario and 60 in British Columbia.
So as I understand it, there are provincial laws that allow private liquor stores to operate, but only if they sell local wine exclusively.
But if that interpretation is right, here's my question: Doesn't this violate GATT Article III:4? Does Canada have some sort of waiver for this?