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European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso poses with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, left, ahead of a meeting at the EU Commission headquarters in Brussels October 18, 2013. The European Union and Canada are expected to close talks on a multi-billion-dollar trade deal on Friday that will integrate two of the world's biggest economies, if they can overcome final disagreements ranging from medicine patents to feta cheese.
European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso poses with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, left, ahead of a meeting at the EU Commission headquarters in Brussels October 18, 2013. The European Union and Canada are expected to close talks on a multi-billion-dollar trade deal on Friday that will integrate two of the world's biggest economies, if they can overcome final disagreements ranging from medicine patents to feta cheese.
(FRANCOIS LENOIR/REUTERS)

Federal government promises compensation over EU drug costs: B.C. minister

British Columbia’s international trade minister says the federal government will compensate the provinces for higher prescription drug costs associated with the proposed Canada-European trade deal.

Teresa Wat said Friday that B.C. received a letter from federal Health Minister Rona Ambrose saying Ottawa will offset higher prescription drug costs linked to sections of the trade pact that extend prescription drug patent protection to European companies.