I would like to take this opportunity to inform you of my decision to retire from my position as Québec’s Agent-General for the UK, Ireland and the Nordic countries as of October 16th.
It has been a pleasure, an honor and a privilege to have served Québec on the international scene here in London over the past three years, in Brussels for eight years prior to this and to have been a member of the National Assembly of Québec for the previous twenty three years.
The last three years have offered me an exceptional opportunity to develop and strengthen our economic, political, cultural and academic ties with the United Kingdom. I have felt proud to see and have been impressed by the interest that Québec generates in these areas and I particularly appreciated the help that so many of our friends, such as you, have given me in furthering these ties.
It has been especially stimulating to have worked with you in fostering an even better understanding of Québec’s modern day reality.
More and more of our British and other friends understand that this reality means that Québec is not only “the place in Canada where French is spoken”. It is also a modern, pluralist, inclusive nation, open to the world with a strong and well-developed sense of self and identity. That sense of identity which flows from, and finds it core in its history, has been enriched by the further diversity that time has brought to its (our) shores.
Québec boasts a prosperous and innovative economy, a rich culture with artists and artistic productions that shine on the world stage, an array of world-class universities with outstanding talent and many other assets that all presage a bright future for future generations. That future will increasingly be built in a global context and with international partners. It will be to our mutual advantage to deepen our ties and mutual understanding even further. The role of our representations across the world and here in the UK in particular are key to this and I am happy to have been part of this undertaking.
Thank you for all you have done with me and the staff of the Delegation in the pursuit of our mandate. I am certain that my successor, Mr John Anthony Coleman, will continue to benefit from your support as I am certain he will deploy all his talents to further our mutual interests.
I wish him every success and as I look forward to life as a new retiree, without professional constraints, I leave you with my best wishes for the future.