Minister Ng announces appointment of four new Board of Directors at Invest in Canada

News release

March 27, 2023 - Ottawa, Ontario - Global Affairs Canada  

Foreign direct investment (FDI) plays a critical role in creating jobs, economic growth and innovation in Canadian communities.

Today, the Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of International Trade, Export Promotion, Small Business and Economic Development, announced the appointment of four new Board Directors of the Invest in Canada Hub: Louise Blais, Marc-André Blanchard, Brad Ferguson, and Rory McAlpine.

As Canada’s FDI attraction and promotion agency, Invest in Canada draws the best global companies to Canada’s shores, with the focus on bring impactful and transformative investments that will benefit communities across the country.

Working with federal, provincial, regional and municipal partners throughout Canada, Invest in Canada advises and supports companies throughout their investment journey.

The appointments of Ms. Blais, Mr. Blanchard, Mr. Ferguson, and Mr. McAlpine will play a crucial role in promoting FDI into Canada and strengthening Canada’s economic resilience by developing new technologies and sustainable industries.


Louise Blais

Ms. Blais of Saint-Ferréol-les-Neiges, Quebec, is currently a Senior Advisor to the Pendleton Group, an economic development consulting group.

She previously worked at Global Affairs Canada for more than 25 years, including as Consul General of Canada in Atlanta and Ambassador and Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations.

She also held the position of Vice President of the Executive Board of UNICEF from 2019 to 2020.

Marc-André Blanchard

Mr. Blanchard of Montréal, Quebec, is a lawyer by training, and currently the Executive Vice-President and Global Head of Sustainability at the Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ), as well as Head of CDPQ Global. 

Before joining CDPQ in September 2020, he was Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Canada to the United Nations in New York from 2016 to 2020. 

From 2017 to 2020, he also sat on Canada’s North American Free Trade Agreement Council.

Brad Ferguson

Mr. Ferguson of Edmonton, Alberta, currently serves as Senior Vice President at Optimus SBR Inc.

He has occupied multiple positions in consulting and economic development, including almost 6 years as President and Chief Executive Officer at the Edmonton Economic Development Corporation from 2012 to 2018.

He was also Assistant Deputy Minister of the Environmental Social Governance Secretariat of the Government of Alberta in 2021 and 2022.

Rory McAlpine

Mr. McAlpine of Victoria, British Columbia, retired in 2020 after 15 years as Senior Vice President of Government and Industry Relations at Maple Leaf Foods, Inc.

He previously worked at both Global Affairs Canada as a Trade Commissioner, serving in Edmonton, Kuwait, Bangkok, Ottawa, and Brussels, and Agriculture and Agri-food Canada as Director General, International Trade Policy Directorate.

From 2003 to 2005, he was Deputy Minister at the British Columbia Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Fisheries.


“Promoting foreign direct investment remains a priority of our government. The diverse talents and experience of Mrs. Blais, Mr. Blanchard, Mr. Ferguson, and Mr. McAlpine will be invaluable as Invest in Canada continues to harness those investment opportunities and ensures Canada remains a leader in today’s fast-changing global landscape.”

- Mary Ng, Minister of International Trade, Export Promotion, Small Business and Economic Development

“Foreign investment is a critical part of Canada’s economic growth strategy, and it requires leaders from across Canadian society to step forward and contribute. As Chair of Invest in Canada, I am thrilled to welcome these new members to the board of directors.  The new appointees bring invaluable skills and experience in government, international diplomacy, business and economic development to the Board.”

- Karl Tabbakh, Board Chair, Invest in Canada

Quick facts

  • Invest in Canada works with global companies to unlock business opportunities in priority sectors aligned with the government’s economic growth strategy.

  • Invest in Canada is a key point of contact for global investors that are making FDI decisions, helping them to facilitate expansion into Canada.

  • In 2021, Canada’s economy rose from twelfth to fifth in rank among the world’s top economies for FDI inflows.

  • In 2022, FDI flows into Canada reached almost $69 billion, which is the second-highest total in the past 10 years ($82 billion in 2021). FDI flows into Canada in 2022 exceeded the last decade’s average, which was $55 billion.

Associated links


Shanti Cosentino
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of International Trade, Export Promotion, Small Business and Economic Development 

Media Relations Office
Global Affairs Canada
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