International Trade Minister Van Loan Outlines Canada’s Free Trade Leadership to Canada Israel Chamber of Commerce

Canada and Israel advance commercial relationship

(No. 281 - September 2, 2010 - 1:10 p.m. ET) The Honourable Peter Van Loan, Minister of International Trade, today met with the Canada Israel Chamber of Commerce in Toronto, where he highlighted Canada’s leadership in promoting free trade and the growing trade relationship between Canada and Israel.

“Canada and Israel are working together to expand trade and investment, to promote innovation and to create jobs and opportunities for both Canadians and Israelis,” said Minister Van Loan. “Canada and Israel’s diversified bilateral trade and cooperation in science and technology, business, education, culture, philanthropy and tourism reflect the sophistication of our economies.”

Israel is an important economic partner for Canada. Since the Canada-Israel Free Trade Agreement came into force, two-way merchandise trade has more than doubled, reaching $1.3 billion last year. Israel is Canada’s sixth-largest merchandise export market in the Middle East.

“Canada and Israel have emerged from the global recession in good shape,” said Minister Van Loan. “Our government’s aggressive free trade agenda and our focus on building on our already strong relationship with Israel will help our countries on the path to full economic recovery. Despite the economic downturn, we are ready for more success in the years ahead.”

In less than four years, the Government of Canada has concluded new free trade agreements with Colombia, Peru, Jordan, Panama and the European Free Trade Association states of Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland. The Canadian government has also launched discussions on economic partnership with two of the world’s largest economies, the European Union and India.

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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