The intra-Belgian disagreement was resolved in the last days of October and paved the way for CETA to be signed. On 28 October, the Belgian regional parliaments authorized full jurisdiction to the federal government and the following day Foreign Minister Didier Reynders signed his signature on behalf of Belgium.   The following day, Sunday 30 October 2016, the treaty was signed by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, European Council President Donald Tusk, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and Slovakia`s Prime Minister Robert Fico (Slovakia chaired the Council of the European Union in the second half of 2016).  The Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) is a modern EU trade agreement that provides EU businesses with more and better business opportunities in Canada, supports employment in Europe and protects consumers and the environment. Negotiations ended in August 2014. All 28 EU member states have approved the final text of CETA, with Belgium being the last country to give its approval.  Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada, travelled to Brussels on October 30, 2016 to sign on behalf of Canada.  The European Parliament approved the agreement on 15 February 2017.  The agreement is subject to ratification by the EU and national lawmakers.   It could only come into force if, at Belgium`s request, the European Court of Justice had not issued a negative opinion on the dispute settlement mechanism.
 In its opinion, the European Court of Justice found that the dispute settlement mechanism was in line with EU law.  Until it enters into formal force, the essential parts apply on an interim basis from 21 September 2017.  CETA is Canada`s largest bilateral initiative since nafta. It was launched as a result of a joint study “Assessing the Costs and Benefits of a Closer EU-Canada Economic Partnership” published in October 2008. Officials announced the opening of negotiations on May 6, 2009 at the Canada-EU Summit in Prague   At the conclusion of the Canada-EU Summit in Ottawa on March 18, 2004, at which the Heads of State and Government agreed on a framework for a new Canada-EU Trade and Investment Promotion Agreement (TIEA). TIEA should go beyond traditional market access issues and include areas such as trade and investment facilitation, competition, mutual recognition of professional qualifications, financial services, e-commerce, temporary access, small and medium-sized enterprises, sustainable development and the exchange of knowledge and technology.