OECD Report Confirms What Canada Has Been Saying: Trade Leads to Jobs, Growth and Long-Term Prosperity

Trade is the new stimulus, and prosperity is built on partnership, says International Trade Minister Ed Fast

May 23, 2012 - The Honourable Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway, in France to attend the annual Organisation for Economic Co-operation (OECD) ministerial meeting, as well as an informal gathering of World Trade Organization ministers, today welcomed the findings of a new publication released by the OECD confirming the critical role trade plays in creating jobs, growth and prosperity. Minister Fast and his counterparts at the two meetings are discussing ways to deepen and improve global trade and investment ties.

“Our government understands the importance of trade to our economy,” said Minister Fast. “Trade accounts for one out of every five jobs in Canada and for 63 percent of our country’s annual GDP.  We welcome the OECD report, which confirms that protectionism is poisonous to global recovery efforts and that trade is the best way to create jobs and economic growth for people around the world.”

The analysis in the OECD publication strengthens the argument that trade contributes to job creation, economic growth, enhanced productivity and improved working conditions, as well as increased wages in developing countries.

“The benefits trade generates for Canadian families are clear,” said Minister Fast.  “When we trade, we become more competitive. Prices for goods and services go down. Wages, salaries and our standard of living go up, and businesses are able to hire more workers.

“In addition to lower prices and a higher standard of living, trade also benefits families by providing more choice and selection of reasonably priced goods and services.”

While in Paris, Minister Fast is also conducting a number of bilateral meetings with his OECD and WTO counterparts on trade and investment-related issues, including a way forward on the Doha Round.

In less than six years, Canada has concluded new free trade agreements with nine countries: Colombia, Honduras, Jordan, Panama, Peru and the European Free Trade Association members Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland. Trade negotiations are ongoing with some of the largest, most dynamic and fastest-growing economies and regions around the world, including the European Union and India. Canada has also recently launched negotiations with Japan.

For more information, please consult Minister Fast Attends OECD and WTO Meetings.

For the full OECD report, please visit Policy Priorities for International Trade and Jobs.

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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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