Statement by Minister of Foreign Affairs on International Day of La Francophonie


March 20, 2021 - Ottawa, Ontario - Global Affairs Canada

The Honourable Marc Garneau, Minister of Foreign Affairs, today issued the following statement:

“Francophone communities across the country are at the heart of our history. Canadians are proud of our two official languages and the cultural riches they allow us to share with each other and with the rest of the world. Our government not only values their contribution but also understands that we must continue to act to protect them.

“On this International Day of La Francophonie, Canada joins francophones and francophiles around the world in celebrating the French language and the diversity of francophone culture.

“This day gives us the opportunity to highlight the important contribution of the International Organisation of La Francophonie in the context of a global crisis that has illustrated the solidarity of this community. Canada is proud to be a leader in the global Francophonie, and the French language is a fundamental part of our identity and a cornerstone of our diplomacy.

“This year, Canada will join the Tunisian government and the other members of La Francophonie in making the XVIII Francophonie Summit, to be held in Djerba in November, a success.

“On this International Day of La Francophonie, I would like to thank Canada’s francophones and francophiles for their invaluable contribution to the international francophone family. Our government will continue to promote them within a diverse and inclusive Francophonie.”

Quick facts

  • Canada is contributing $14.6 million over 5 years to the TV5MONDEplus platform, which promotes French in nearly 200 countries.
  • In 1970, Canada was a founding member of the Agence de Coopération Culturelle et Technique [cultural and technical cooperation agency], which became La Francophonie in 2005. With the support of provincial governments and partners, Canada was one of the first countries to promote La Francophonie and supported the creation of its institutions.
  • French is the fifth-most-spoken language in the world and the fourth-most-used language on the Internet. An official language of 32 states and governments and most international organizations, French is the language of instruction for more than 80 million people and a foreign language learned by more than 50 million.

Associated links


Syrine Khoury
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Foreign Affairs

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