Minister Cannon to Visit Holy See, Italy and China

(No. 337 - October 15, 2010 - 7:30 p.m. ET) The Honourable Lawrence Cannon, Minister of Foreign Affairs, today announced that he will travel to the Holy See, Italy and China from October 17 to 23, 2010, for bilateral meetings with several of his counterparts.

At the Holy See, Minister Cannon will attend the canonization of Brother André, the first Canadian-born man to become a saint of the Catholic Church.

“This is a historic moment for Canada,” said the Minister. “We are here to celebrate the life of a person who in his time gathered an enormous following through his faith, leadership and altruistic service to others.”

In Rome, the Minister will meet with Franco Frattini, Italy’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, to discuss a range of issues related to the bilateral relationship.

“I welcome the opportunity to discuss our excellent relations with a strong ally and examine areas where we can advance our close collaboration,” said Minister Cannon.

Following his visit to the Holy See and Italy, Minister Cannon will continue on to Shanghai and Beijing on October 21 and 22.

“This 40th anniversary of Canada-China diplomatic relations presents a perfect opportunity to enhance Canada’s engagement with China, which is an important global player,” said Minister Cannon. “To that end, Canada is looking forward to strengthening our relationship with China as we continue to implement the provisions of the Canada-China Joint Statement in the priority areas of trade and investment, energy and environment, health and governance.”

Highlights of Minister Cannon’s visit to Shanghai will include a tour of Expo 2010’s China Pavilion and Montreal and Vancouver exhibits, as well as an event at the Canada Pavilion. Minister Cannon will also work to advance Canadian commercial interests in Shanghai. In Beijing, the Minister will meet with Foreign Affairs Minister Yang Jiechi and other senior officials.

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For further information, media representatives may contact:

Melissa Lantsman
Office of the Minister of Foreign Affairs

Foreign Affairs Media Relations Office
Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada