Canada takes another strategic step in the Asia-Pacific region: exploratory free trade agreement talks agreed to with ASEAN nations
“Canada is a Pacific nation and is pursuing a comprehensive, strategic and progressive trade agenda throughout the region. An enhanced economic partnership with ASEAN will create good middle-class jobs and benefit our small and medium-sized enterprises by providing clear, stable and progressive rules of conduct so businesses can grow and expand in one of the world’s fastest-growing and most dynamic markets.”
- François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of International Trade
“As one of Canada’s representatives to the APEC Business Advisory Council, Ralph Lutes will play an important role in increasing Canada’s trade and economic cooperation with APEC and promoting progressive trade policies that benefit everyone.”
- Pamela Goldsmith-Jones, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Trade
ASEAN is a regional intergovernmental organization comprising 10 member states: Cambodia, Brunei, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar (Burma), the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam.
In 2016, Canada-ASEAN merchandise trade reached a value of $21.6 billion.
ASEAN is one of the world’s fastest-growing economic regions, with a GDP estimated at over $3.1 trillion in 2015.
The Philippines is the chair of ASEAN in 2017 and is responsible for coordinating ASEAN’s overall relationship with external partners, including Canada.
This year marks the 40th anniversary of Canada’s status as a Dialogue Partner of ASEAN. Canada is one of only 10 countries with this important level of partnership.
APEC’s 21 members are home to nearly 2.9 billion people who generate 60% of the world’s GDP and accounted for 84% of Canada’s total merchandise trade in 2015.
APEC includes four of Canada’s top five trading partners: the United States, China, Mexico and Japan.
ABAC brings together business and political leaders from APEC member economies who are focused on increasing trade and economic cooperation. Canada’s ABAC representatives are Suzanne Benoît, President of Aéro Montréal (appointed in 2015) and Ralph J. Lutes, Vice President, Asia, of Teck Resources Limited (appointed in 2017).
- Joint Media Statement – The 6th ASEAN Economic Ministers and Canada Consultations
- Backgrounder - APEC Business Advisory Council and biographical note
- Parliament Secretary Goldsmith-Jones to visit Philippines for 6th ASEAN economic ministers’ meeting with Canada
- Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation
- APEC Business Advisory Council
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