Introductory Remarks by Minister Cannon at Media Availability with Finnish Foreign Minister

No. 2010/6 - Ottawa, Ontario - February 11, 2010

Check Against Delivery

Foreign Minister [Cai-Göran Alexander] Stubb and I have just held very productive discussions regarding key issues on the global agenda and in our bilateral relationship.

As founding members of the Arctic Council, Canada and Finland have strengthened their collaboration in the Arctic region. The Canadian government has made protecting the North and the Arctic a priority, and we will continue to play a leadership role in the region both now and in the future.

Canada values Finland as an important EU partner on issues of interest to Canada, many of which will be addressed at the next Canada-EU summit.

I want to point out that the EU is Canada’s second-largest trade and investment partner, and Finland is Canada’s eighth-largest trading partner in the EU, with two-way trade at $3 billion last year.

Our excellent bilateral relations build on long-standing international cooperation on common priorities at the United Nations and other multilateral forums, including on Afghanistan and Haiti.

We had excellent exchanges on a range of other issues, including Canada’s priorities for the G8 and G20 summits, which Canada will host later in the year.

We also discussed the Iranian regime’s decision to further enrich its nuclear material in defiance of UN Security Council resolutions.

Thank you.