The Québec Government Office in New York, Québec’s oldest foreign representation and main office in the U.S., is marking 75 years in New York in 2015 with a year-long series of events and programs.
Commissioner for International Affairs in New York Penny Abeywardena offers a mayoral message from Mayor De Blasio to Minister of International Relations and La Francophonie Christine St-Pierre and DG Jean-Claude Lauzon.
On February 23, Delegate General Jean-Claude Lauzon kicked off the landmark anniversary with a well-attended reception held in the presence of Minister of International Relations and La Francophonie Christine St-Pierre who was in Washington, D.C. and New York for a five-day mission.
“Over the past five days, I have witnessed firsthand the concrete impact of Québec’s long-term presence in both Washington, DC, and New York City. The relationship that we have built with the U.S. is based on confidence, stability, credibility and reciprocity. The excitement that I observed during my trip is a clear sign that the impact of the Québec Government Office in New York on Québec’s economic development will continue to grow in the coming years,” said Minister St-Pierre.
In a video statement, Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard underscored the strong bonds between Quebec and its neighbors to the south: “The U.S. has always been important for Québec; despite the border that separates us, we are first and foremost North Americans," he said. "This anniversary is a reminder of just how important it is to keep our borders open, to foster discussion and ensure the free flow of our ideas, our cultures, and our products.”
Québec’s first “General Agency”
In 1940, at the request of Québec manufacturers seeking out new markets in the U.S., the Québec government opened a small office in a new complex called Rockefeller Center. From a modest one-person office providing commercial representation – the Agency’s main objective – the Quebec Government Office gradually extended is mandate to cover investment, culture and academic affairs.
Québec in New York: A longstanding and reliable partner
In 2013, the total value of trade between Québec and New York State was nearly 6.7 billion U.S. dollars. Exports to New York represent 12% of Québec’s U.S. bound exports and just under 9% of global exports.
Trade between Québec and the U.S. stands at $75 billion annually. Over the years, the value of Québec’s exports worldwide has grown to reach $65.7 billion, with nearly 70% of those exports coming here in the U.S.
Please check back for the latest on our 75th anniversary events.