Minister Fast Welcomes New Members to SME Advisory Board

Board plays key role in providing valuable SME insight as we continue to create new jobs and opportunities, says Minister Fast

April 29, 2014 - Ottawa, Ontario - Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada

The Honourable Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade, today welcomed the appointments of Charles Cartmill and Sheila Kehler to the Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SME) Advisory Board. The appointments are for a period of three years.

Charles Cartmill, of Halifax, Nova Scotia, is a lifelong entrepreneur who formed LED Roadway Lighting Ltd. to focus on Light Emitting Diode-based street and area lighting technology.

Sheila Kehler, of Winkler, Manitoba, is a part owner of CanAgro Exports Inc, a distributor and supplier of high-quality North American agricultural equipment from Canada and the United States.

The SME Advisory Board is composed of 18 members who are private-sector business owners involved in global commerce and represent various industrial sectors and regions of Canada. The Board provides advice and recommendations to the Minister of International Trade on trade priorities, policies, programs and government services. The Board also informs the minister of business challenges to SMEs in the area of international trade.

The SME Advisory Board to the Minister of International Trade will meet April 30-May 1, 2014 in Ottawa.

Quick Facts

  • Canada’s Global Markets Action Plan is the most ambitious pro-trade and pro-investment plan in Canada’s history. The Plan focuses on Canada’s core strengths in priority markets through bold trade policy and vigorous trade promotion, and sets concrete targets to grow the presence of Canada’s SMEs in emerging markets.
  • According to Export Development Canada, of the more than 1.09 million SMEs active in Canada, 41,000 are currently exporting.


“I am pleased that Sheila Kehler and Charles Cartmill have joined the SME Advisory Board. They provide the knowledge and experience of SMEs as we are delivering the most ambitious pro-trade plan in Canada’s history. SMEs are the backbone of the Canadian economy, and a priority under Canada’s Global Markets Action Plan to create jobs and opportunities across the country.”

- Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade

Related Products

Associated Links


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

Media Relations Office
Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada
Follow us on Twitter: @Canada_Trade
Like us on Facebook: Canada’s International Trade Plan-DFATD