Parliamentary Secretary Alghabra to continue advancing Canada’s inclusive approach to trade in London and Mississauga, Ontario

News release

November 14, 2018 - Ottawa, Ontario - Global Affairs Canada

The Government of Canada recognizes the important role that women-owned companies play in Canada’s economic growth. It is committed to ensuring they have equal opportunity to participate in the economy, leading to inclusive growth that works for everyone.

On November 15, 2018, Omar Alghabra, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Trade Diversification, will travel to London and meet with Ontario women entrepreneurs and students to highlight Canada’s ambitious trade diversification agenda, which means getting more ambitious Canadians, including women, engaged in trade.

In Mississauga, on November 16, Parliamentary Secretary Alghabra will participate in a round table on trade and gender with women entrepreneurs, business owners, representatives of women’s associations and civil society organizations, as well as with academics and experts. The discussion will focus on how Canada’s free trade and investment agreements can be made more inclusive in order to ensure that more traders and workers benefit from them.

Throughout his tour, Parliamentary Secretary Alghabra will highlight how Ontarian businesses can take advantage of international opportunities arising from Canada’s new trade agreements and also highlight how the Trade Commissioner Service (TCS) is helping women-owned businesses integrate into the global marketplace through targeted trade missions. For example, in June, the first minister-led delegation of Canadian businesswomen attended the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council’s National Conference and Business Fair in Detroit, Michigan.


“Ensuring that more women-owned businesses have access to the opportunities that international trade and investment have to offer is a cornerstone of diversifying Canada’s global trade. The activities of the Business Women in International Trade [BWIT] program help connect women-owned businesses to the global marketplace, which, in turn, spurs economic growth that benefits everyone.”

- Omar Alghabra, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of International Trade Diversification

Quick facts

  • Global Affairs Canada has provided over 20 years of support to Canadian women-owned businesses through the Trade Commissioner Service’s Business Women in International Trade (BWIT) program.

  • This year alone, BWIT supported three businesswomen’s trade missions: two to the United States and one to Europe.

  • The Government of Canada has also led two other trade missions to facilitate the participation of all segments of Canadian society in trade and investment: an Indigenous trade mission to New Zealand in October 2018 and an LGBTQ2 trade mission to Philadelphia in August 2018.

  • Women-owned businesses seeking to develop new export opportunities can apply for financial assistance through the TCS’s CanExport program. Since January 2016, this multi-year funding program has provided financial assistance to over 1,200 projects led by small and medium-sized enterprises in emerging markets and in markets where Canada enjoys a free trade agreement.

  • The Government of Canada is holding a public consultation on trade and gender and welcomes Canadians’ ideas, experiences and priorities as part of this consultation (see link below).

Associated links


Isabella Brisson-Urdaneta
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of International Trade Diversification

Media Relations Office
Global Affairs Canada
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