Canada intends to expand trade with Asia-Pacific region

10:03, October 05, 2010      

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Canadian International Trade Minister Peter Van Loan expressed the country's willingness to promote free and open trade with the Asia-Pacific region on Monday during a workshop at York University.

Van Loan delivered remarks and participated in a panel discussion in the workshop, which is for Canadian businesses on accessing opportunities in the region and anticipates November's Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Ministerial Meeting in Yokohama, Japan.

"APEC meetings aim to strengthen trade and investment cooperation in the region," said Van Loan. "We have strong ties across the Pacific, and we want to increase opportunities for Canadian businesses in this highly dynamic region."

Since APEC's formation in 1989, total merchandise trade in the Asia-Pacific region has grown by 350 percent. In 2009, Canada's merchandise trade with APEC economies totaled 590.7 billion Canadian dollars (about 577.19 billion U.S. dollars) and accounted for more than 81 percent of Canada's trade.

"Free trade is a pathway to strong economies, and our government is committed to pursuing an aggressive and ambitious free trade agenda that will create jobs in Canada and lead to prosperity for economies at various stages of development." He added.

In the past four years, the Government of Canada has opened new markets for Canadians and Canadian businesses by concluding free trade agreements with Peru, Colombia, Jordan, Panama and the European Free Trade Association states: Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland. The government has also launched discussions on economic partnership with the European Union and India.

Source: Xinhua


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