Expanding Canada’s Trade and Investment Ties in Asia-Pacific Region a Harper Government Priority

International Trade Minister Ed Fast commits to strengthening the prosperity of Canadians through deepened trade at APEC Ministerial Meeting

(No. 343 - November 10, 2011 - 2:30 p.m. ET) The Honourable Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway, will participate in the 2011 Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Ministerial Meeting in Honolulu, Hawaii, on November 11, 2011. Minister Fast will reiterate the Harper government’s commitment to deepening Canada’s trading relationships in the priority Asia-Pacific markets, and will urge his counterparts to pursue measures that promote deeper trade and investment.

“With one in five jobs generated through trade and with trade equivalent to over 60 percent of Canada’s economy, our government is committed to continuing to deepen Canada’s trading relationships in high-growth markets around the world,” said Minister Fast. “Increasing Canada’s ties in the economies of the Asia-Pacific region will bring more jobs and opportunity and greater prosperity to hard-working Canadians in every region of our country.”

Minister Fast’s participation in the APEC Ministerial Meeting follows his recent trade missions to China and India, two of the highest-growth markets in the world. In addition to meeting with Chinese and Indian political leaders to discuss progress being made to grow Canada’s trade and investment ties with those booming economies, the Minister highlighted Canadian expertise in a variety of sectors, advanced Canada’s commercial interests in China and India, encouraged business leaders in both countries to look to Canada as an investment destination of choice and promoted Canada’s Asia-Pacific Gateway with its many advantages as the logical corridor of choice between Canada and Asia-Pacific markets.

While at the APEC Ministerial Meeting, Minister Fast will hold bilateral meetings with his counterparts from many of the APEC economies to discuss concrete ways to deepen Canada’s economic ties in priority Asia-Pacific markets. He will also meet with many CEOs from leading global companies to showcase Canada as a destination of choice for business investors.

“Just as Prime Minister Stephen Harper showed our country’s leadership on the world stage with the Canada-led Cannes Action Plan for Jobs and Growth, adopted by G-20 countries last week in France, we will once again highlight Canada’s leadership at the APEC Summit by showing that our country is leading by example when it comes to growing our economy and creating jobs through a commitment to deepened trade,” said Minister Fast. “As extreme challenges in the global economy persist, I will remind my counterparts at APEC that tough times call for more trade and investment and that history has shown us, time and time again, that this is the best way to grow our economies and create jobs and prosperity for our citizens.”

APEC economies account for some 56 percent of world GDP, 48 percent of global merchandise trade and 40 percent of the world’s population. Total two-way trade between Canada and APEC economies grew from $374.6 billion in 1994 to $654.4 billion in 2010, an average annual growth rate of 3.5 percent.

For more information on the Minister’s participation at the APEC Summit, please consult: Minister Fast at APEC.

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For further information, media representatives may contact:

Rudy Husny
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Ed Fast
Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway
613-992-7332

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