Canada and Russia Seek to Strengthen Trade Ties

Ministers Van Loan and Ritz discuss economic interests with Russian First Deputy Prime Minister Zubkov

(No. 144 - April 28, 2010 - 1:30 p.m. ET) The Honourable Peter Van Loan, Minister of International Trade, and the Honourable Gerry Ritz, Minister of Agriculture, met with Viktor Alekseyevich Zubkov, First Deputy Prime Minister of Russia, today in Ottawa to discuss deepening the commercial relationship between Canada and Russia.

“Our countries have seen increasing trade, investment and cooperation in science and technology and in agriculture,” said Minister Van Loan. “As a leading economy, Canada offers first-rate business conditions: the lowest taxes on new business investment in the G7, the fastest economic growth in the G7 for 2010, 2011 and 2012, the world’s soundest banking system and a high quality of life.”

“Russia’s growth in agricultural trade is creating tremendous opportunities for our farmers,” said Minister Ritz. “Just as my last mission to Moscow in October led to a number of important wins both for Canadian producers and their Russian partners, meetings like today’s continue to help us strengthen our cooperation.”

Russia is an emerging market and remains a destination for Canadian companies specializing in technology, agriculture and infrastructure. The value of the stock of Canadian foreign direct investment in Russia was approximately $725 million at the end of 2009.

In 1993, Canada and Russia created the Canada-Russia Intergovernmental Economic Commission (IEC) to promote economic relations between the two countries. The commission holds regular meetings to address issues affecting bilateral trade, highlight success stories and encourage business development. Minister Van Loan and First Deputy Prime Minister Zubkov co-chair the commission.

The last full session of the Canada-Russia IEC took place in Moscow in June 2009. The next session is scheduled to take place in Canada in 2011.

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For further information, media representatives may contact:

Monika Bujalska
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Peter Van Loan
Minister of International Trade
613-992-9304

Trade Media Relations Office
Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada
613-996-2000