Harper Government Highlights Canada-South Korea People-to-People Ties as Cornerstone of Economic Growth

Minister Alexander says strong and growing relationship more vibrant than ever with new free trade agreement

March 14, 2014 - Toronto, Ontario - Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada

Canada’s Citizenship and Immigration Minister Chris Alexander held an event today at the Korean Canadian Cultural Association in Toronto to highlight the strong and growing relationship between Canada and South Korea.

Canada has long enjoyed positive relations with the Republic of Korea, a friendship that continues to develop as South Korea becomes an increasingly important economic partner.

This partnership was buttressed this week when Prime Minister Stephen Harper and President Park Geun-hye of South Korea announced the conclusion of negotiations on a new free trade agreement.

The Canada-Korea Free Trade Agreement is a landmark achievement: it is Canada’s first free trade agreement in Asia, one of the fastest growing and most dynamic regions in the world. South Korea is not only a major economic player and a key market for Canada; it also serves as a gateway for Canadian businesses into the Asia-Pacific region.

Quick Facts

  • More than 220,000 people in Canada are of Korean origin, and approximately 22,000 Canadians live in South Korea.
  • South Korea is an important economic partner for Canada, with an economy of $1.1 trillion and a population of 50 million.
  • The Canada-Korea Free Trade Agreement is projected to boost Canada’s economy by $1.7 billion and increase Canadian exports to South Korea by 32 percent.
  • Canadian businesses will benefit from the same access to the South Korean market as their competitors, notably those from the United States and the European Union.


“Our growing economic relations will reinforce the already robust people-to-people ties between Canada and South Korea. This new free trade agreement is yet another example of our strong and growing relationship.”

Canada’s Citizenship and Immigration Minister Chris Alexander

“Our government is committed to expanding trade with new and emerging markets in Asia that will benefit hard-working Canadians through the creation of jobs and opportunities across the country.”

Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade

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Shannon Gutoskie
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Ed Fast
Minister of International Trade

Media Relations Office
Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada
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