Friday, April 26, 2013

Prime Ministers Persad-Bissessar, Harper reaffirm need for trade and investment

Prime Ministers Kamla Persad-Bissessar and Stephen Harper in Ottawa Thursday 
Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar on Thursday evening concluded the formal part of her brief official visit to Canada at a business event in Toronto. She and her Canadian host, Prime Minister Stephen Harper arrived together at the event, attended by members of the Trinidad and Tobago diaspora and Canadian business leaders.

Both Prime Ministers spoke about the warm relationship between their two countries and the similarity, especially in the celebration of the diversity of their respective countries. 

They reaffirmed the need for continued cooperation in trade and investment, noting that direct Canadian investment in T&T has exceeded CA$1.3 billion, with at least 175 Canadian companies doing business in Trinidad and Tobago. 

And she invited Canadian businesses to attend the next Caribbean Investment Forum to be held in Port of Spain in June.Persad-Bissessar reminded her audience that trade between the two countries is nothing new since two centuries ago Canadians were sailing to Trinidad to trade salt fish and lumber for sugar, molasses and rum. She noted that salted Canadian cod is still a favourite at home and New Brunswick Sardines remains a common, well-loved import.

The Prime Minister also spoke of the religious and educational connection between the two countries and the great contribution made by Canadian missionary Rev. Dr John Morton of Nova Scotia, who established the Canadian Mission in Trinidad in 1868, providing education for children who had been condemned to a life of servitude as the offsprings of indentured labourers.
She thanked Canada for helping to provide upward mobility for generations, noting that she herself is a product of the Presbyterian School system.

Persad-Bissessar also extended her thanks to Harper, members of his government and the people of Canada for their hospitality.

Earlier in the day she was in Ottawa for the formal welcome to Canada. Gideon Hanoomansingh has report on that.

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Jai & Sero

Jai & Sero

Our family at home in Toronto 2008

Our family at home in Toronto 2008
Amit, Heather, Fuzz, Aj, Jiv, Shiva, Rampa, Sero, Jai