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April 11, 2009 (9:00 a.m. EDT)
No. 95

Minister Day Launches Trade Mission to China

The Honourable Stockwell Day, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway, today launched a trade mission in Shenyang—the first stop in his seven-day visit to China.

“As Prime Minister Harper said at the recent London Summit, strengthening international trade is critical to bringing the world out of this global economic crisis. We must avoid protectionism and look outward to harness the power of international trade and investment,” said Minister Day. “I am here to demonstrate that Canada views China as a key economic partner.”

The Canadian business delegation is comprised of 16 companies and organizations. The 11 participants in Shenyang specialize in energy-efficient building products and wood frame construction.

“Canada has a lot to offer the Chinese marketplace and these firms have a proven expertise in all aspects of the construction sector,” said Minister Day. “This trade mission focusing on one of the world’s fastest-growing economies will provide great opportunities for Canadian companies with the expertise in building systems or innovative solutions for energy-efficient construction to meet the demands of this expanding market.”

Travelling to Shenyang, Beijing, Chengdu and Shanghai, the trade mission will promote Canadian expertise in the following areas:

  • building systems—wood frame and light steel construction; and
  • energy-efficient construction—building products, technologies and design, including retrofitting, energy and water conservation, heating and cooling equipment, new building materials, cold climate building technologies, and architectural services.

“The Canadian government is not only opening the door for us, but having Minister Day here supporting our efforts also gives us the credibility needed for the China market,” said Michael Wong, Principal Architect at MHKW Architects.

“We are pleased to be working with the government to identify and explore emerging opportunities as we showcase our globally competitive forest products,” said Geoff Schimmel, Chairman of the Ontario Wood Products Export Association (OntarioWood).

This mission will provide an excellent opportunity not only to promote Canadian expertise but also to learn about recent developments and current trends affecting the Chinese construction sector.

The 11 participants in the mission in Shenyang are: Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation; Davey International Inc.; Futurevision Energy Systems Ltd.; GenesisTP Inc.; Home Insulation Corporation; Kasian Architecture Interior Design and Planning Ltd.; MHKW Architects Inc.; Ontario Wood Products Export Association (OntarioWood); Pioneer Log Homes of British Columbia; Soprema; and Y+S International Design Ltd.

Minister Day’s visit coincides with that of two other Canadian trade delegations to China, focusing on the sectors of information and communications technology and medical devices. The Minister will meet with the two delegations as part of his activities in Hong Kong on April 16 and 17.

Construction is one of the fastest-growing industries in China. The sector accounted for 7 percent of China’s GDP in 2007, making it the country’s fourth-largest industry.

For further information, consult the following website: Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada - International Trade: Minister Day visits Japan and China

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For further information, and high-resolution pictures of Minister Day’s visit to Japan and China, media representatives may contact:

Mélisa Leclerc
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway

Trade Media Relations Office
Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada