Baird to Visit Astana, Abu Dhabi and Dubai

November 12, 2013 - Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird today announced that he will travel to Kazakhstan and the United Arab Emirates from November 13 to 18.

In the first-ever bilateral visit by a Canadian foreign minister to Kazakhstan, Baird is expected to sign a nuclear cooperation agreement providing international treaty-level assurances that nuclear material, equipment and technology originating in Canada or Kazakhstan and transferred to the other will be used only for civilian and peaceful applications.

“This deal will signal our commitment to the peaceful use of nuclear energy,” said Baird. “This agreement will also mean jobs and prosperity for Canada, which remains our top priority as a government, as well as for Kazakhstan.

“This agreement will permit nuclear trade between our countries by ensuring that any nuclear material, equipment or technology transferred between Canada and Kazakhstan will be used for peaceful purposes.”

Baird will also meet with government officials to promote bilateral commercial relations and to discuss regional and international security concerns.

“Canada and Kazakhstan have a strong partnership, and this visit signals our commitment to continuing to build this important relationship in the region,” said Baird.

In the United Arab Emirates, Baird will attend, for the third year in a row, the Sir Bani Yas Forum, an annual high-level international gathering hosted by his counterpart, Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Foreign Minister of the U.A.E.

“This meeting always provides a great opportunity to speak with an impressive group of international figures,” said Baird. “It also comes at a critical juncture in the region, and I will have the opportunity to discuss issues surrounding peace and security in the Middle East, including the conflict in Syria, the Middle East Peace Process and Iran.”

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