Canada appoints new ambassador to China

News Release

March 10, 2017 - Ottawa, Ontario - Global Affairs Canada

Canada has made it a top priority to create a stronger, more stable long-term relationship with China. The Honourable Chrystia Freeland, Minister of Foreign Affairs, today announced the following diplomatic appointment.

The Honourable John McCallum becomes Ambassador of Canada to the People’s Republic of China. Mr. McCallum replaces Guy Saint-Jacques.

The appointment of Mr. McCallum underscores the significance of the Canada-China bilateral relationship, which will be enhanced by Mr. McCallum’s exceptional experience gained in the public and private sectors during a long career in service to Canada.

Following last year’s exchange of leader-level visits and new cooperative dialogue, Mr. McCallum will lead the embassy’s efforts to broaden and deepen our relationship for the benefit of all Canadians.

Canada and China share a long-standing relationship on many levels, including political, commercial, scientific, cultural and academic. Renewing Canada’s relationship with China will help to grow the economy and strengthen the middle class. The two countries will continue to strengthen cooperation on bilateral and multilateral issues, including through regular, respectful and frank dialogue about opportunities and challenges.


“The appointment of Mr. McCallum reinforces the real importance of our relations with China. He is a long-time friend, mentor and colleague of mine, and I know full well that his experience in the private sector, as an academic and in government is unique. In his recent role as minister of immigration, refugees and citizenship, he led the efforts to welcome more than 40,000 Syrian refugees to Canada. His commitment to Canada has been an inspiration to us all and an example to the world. I look forward to continue working with him.”

- Hon. Chrystia Freeland, P.C., M.P., Minister of Foreign Affairs

Quick Facts

  • The Canada-China relationship has five priority areas: governance and values (such as human rights and the rule of law), trade and investment, energy, environment, health and education.

  • More than 1.3 million Canadian residents are of Chinese origin, and over 110,000 Chinese students studied at Canadian educational institutions in 2014.

  • Chinese is Canada’s third most spoken language after English and French, and immigrants born in China, including in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, form one of the largest groups within Canada’s immigrant population.

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