Canada reinforces collaboration with Mexico

08:17, May 28, 2010      

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Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced on Thursday that Canada and Mexico have agreed to greater cooperation on air transport, youth mobility and anti- crime capacity building during a visit to Ottawa by Mexico President Felipe Calderon.

"We are setting the stage for the next decade of growth and cooperation between our two countries," said Harper. "The initiatives signed today demonstrate that we are deepening our relations in a wide number of areas that will benefit both our peoples."

Initiatives signed by Canada and Mexico, which were witnessed by the two leaders, include an updated Air Transport Agreement, a Memorandum Of Understanding (MOU) on Youth Mobility, a Joint Action Plan, and several anti-crime capacity building projects.

Amendments to the existing Bilateral Air Transport Agreement will provide airlines from both countries with greater market access for passenger, combination and all-cargo services and greater pricing flexibility.

The MOU on Youth Mobility will promote travel by Canadian and Mexican youth in one another's country for up to one year, stimulating personal and professional development.

And the Joint Action Plan provides a framework for moving the relationship forward, outlining the priorities that both Governments are committed to working on in the years to come.

Canada and Mexico also announced several anti-crime capacity building projects that the Government of Canada will be undertaking to support Mexico's robust and ongoing efforts to combat corruption and reform its legal system. This includes training for Mexican judges and lawyers and a harmonization of Mexico's criminal law.

In an address to the Canadian parliament earlier in the day, Calderon called on the two countries to continue to work on strengthening bilateral economic, educational, cultural, scientific and technological exchanges, and to strengthen tourism and mutual understanding between the two peoples for the future of North America's prosperity.

He also emphasized the importance of fighting against global warning, expressed his willing to see Canadian leadership in helping to find safe ways to bring about a better shared future.

"Tackling global warming is not a task solely for the developed nations: it is incumbent on us all, under the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities," he added.

Canada and Mexico share strong people-to-people links that continue to be a major benefit to both countries. Over 20,000 Mexican temporary workers come to Canada each year. In addition, approximately 12,000 Mexican students visited Canada in 2008. More than 1.2 million Canadians visit Mexico annually and approximately 75,000 Canadian citizens live in Mexico.

Trade and investment ties between Canada and Mexico have grown several-fold since NAFTA came into force in 1994, contributing to increased prosperity and economic growth in both counties. Canada and Mexico are now among each other's largest trading partners, while Canada has become a major foreign investor in Mexico.



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