International Trade Minister to lead trade mission on his first official visit to Italy

News Release

May 26, 2017 - Ottawa, Ontario - Global Affairs Canada

Canada and Italy enjoy a history of strong people-to-people connections based on shared values and cooperation in cultural, social, economic and political areas. These links form a solid foundation on which to expand the two countries’ trading relationship and create more opportunities for the middle class.

The Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of International Trade, will lead his first official trade mission to Italy from May 28 to 30, 2017. Building on Canada’s significant commercial strengths in Italy, the trade mission will focus on three key sectors: aerospace and defence, agriculture and agri-food, and information and communications technology (ICT). Minister Champagne will also be focused on creating new opportunities for Canada’s wood industry, holding meetings with several possible buyers and partners on the ground.

The delegation will consist of more than 40 Canadian organizations, whose representatives will participate in programs in both Milan and Rome. Minister Champagne and the delegation will join Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on May 30 during the Prime Minister’s official visit to Rome and the Vatican City. In Rome, the business delegation will have the opportunity to attend the Prime Minister’s address to the Italian parliament. Stéphane Dion, Canada's ambassador-designate to Germany and special envoy to the EU and Europe, will also participate in the mission, reflecting his mandate to strengthen ties between Canada and Europe.

In addition to leading the business delegation, Minister Champagne will meet with business and political leaders, including Carlo Calenda, Italy’s Minister of Economic Development. He will also undertake media engagements to promote Canada’s progressive trade agenda and the Canada-EU Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA).


“I am very pleased to lead this important trade mission to Italy. Expanding Canada’s trade and investment prospects is key to helping our businesses grow, which in turn generates more jobs and opportunities for Canada’s middle class and those working hard to join it.

“Italy has been a steadfast supporter of CETA. I look forward to the enormous opportunities that CETA will bring for consumers, businesses, and for our workers on both sides of the Atlantic.”

- François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of International Trade

Quick Facts

  • Canada and Italy have a strong commercial relationship. In 2016, Canadian exports to Italy were valued at about $2.3 billion and Italian imports to Canada at $7.5 billion.

  • In 2015, Italian direct investment in Canada was valued at close to $1.6 billion and Canadian direct investment in Italy at $539 million.

  • Italy’s aerospace industry is the fourth-largest in Europe and the seventh in the world, making Italy a major player in the global arena of aerospace and defence.

  • Italy is Canada’s largest export market for agriculture products in Europe, representing approximately 17 percent of total Canadian agriculture exports to the EU.

  • The Italian ICT market generated revenues of €65 billion ($98 billion) in 2014. Active subsectors of interest for Canadian companies include mobile telecom infrastructure, software solutions (including cloud-based platforms), cybersecurity, digital media, financial technologies and the Internet of Things.

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