Collaboration in Education and Medicine Provides Boost to Economy

October 7, 2012 - Riyadh, Saudi Arabia - The Honourable Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway, highlights Canada’s well-established relationship with Saudi Arabia in the medical field. Over the past 30 years, Canada has trained more than 4,000 Saudi physicians, including the Minister of Health. More Saudi doctors are currently being trained in Canada than anywhere else in the world—some 900 doctors, with the majority being trained as specialists.

Minister Fast is on a five-day trade mission to Saudi Arabia and Jordan to advance the interests of Canadian businesses in the Middle East, which in turn will create jobs and increased prosperity. Minister Fast is accompanied on the trade mission by representatives of more than 20 Canadian organizations primarily in the infrastructure, health-care and education sectors.

The trade mission, which is being organized by Canada’s Trade Commissioner Service, is one of several strategically focused, sector-specific missions that Minister Fast has led since taking on the international trade portfolio.

Located in more than 150 cities worldwide and in regional offices across Canada, the Canadian Trade Commissioner Service, part of Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada, is Canada’s most extensive network of international business professionals. The Trade Commissioner Service helps companies that are looking to export, invest abroad, attract investment or develop innovation and R&D partnerships.

The Honourable Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway, meets with Canadian-trained physician and Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Health Abdullah Al Rabeeah.

The Honourable Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway, meets with Canadian-trained Saudi physicians.

The Honourable Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway, announces the opening of a new Apotex scientific office. Apotex is a world leader in the pharmaceutical sector, with 6,000 employees and 20 facilities, and is the largest Canadian-owned pharmaceutical company. (Left to right: Canadian Ambassador Tom MacDonald; the Honourable Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway; Mark Heselton, President of Apotex International; and Sheikh Abdulaziz Al Serafy, Executive Manager of Cigalah Group, a local distributor for Apotex.

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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
rudy.husny@international.gc.ca

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