Canada's Minister of Small Business and International Trade, Mary Ng, has told an online event hosted by business group Ibec, that trade with Ireland increased by 65% last year 'because of CETA’.

CETA is the EU-Canada Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement.

It’s been in force provisionally since September 2017.

In Ireland it is currently being examined by the Oireachtas Committee on European Affairs before being put before the Dáil for a vote.

Some Green Party TD’s have expressed misgivings and opposition to CETA.

Ibec CEO, Danny McCoy, said at the event that in 2019 Irish companies exported €3.8bn worth of goods and services to Canada.

More than a €1bn of Canadian goods and services were imported here.

Minister Ng cited the decisions by Canadian firms Bathfitter, which opened its European headquarters in Limerick last year and Greenfield Global, which has opened a base in Portlaoise, as examples of how the agreement was working.

She said work is underway on constructing a dispute resolution system which can mediate between investors and governments.

She said Canada was aligned with the EU when it comes to labour laws and environmental standards.