Several internationally renowned figures from the world’s economic, political and social circles participated in the 15th Conference of Montréal held from June 8 to 11. The conference theme was “Adapting to a New World Order.” Premier Jean Charest presided over the opening luncheon attended by World Bank President Robert B. Zoellick, among others.
The fact that this forum on major global issues is held in Montréal enables the Québec government to take part in the discussions and also provides an unparalleled opportunity to maintain and forge ties with influential political and economic players.
Premier Charest seized the occasion to speak with Catherine Ashton, European Commissioner for External Trade, to discuss details of negotiations begun last month between Canada and the European Union for signing a new transatlantic agreement.
The Minister of International Relations and Minister Responsible for La Francophonie, Pierre Arcand, engaged in discussions with Commonwealth Secretary-General Kamalesh Sharma; the Chief Economist of the African Development Bank Group, Louis Kasekende; the Finance Secretary for the State of Rio de Janeiro, Joaquim Levy; and the Vice Governor of China’s Shandong Province, Suilian Wang. Vice Governor Wang’s visit provided an opportunity to hold the first meeting of the Québec–Shandong Working Group, which marked the start of a two-year cooperation program covering several sectors of activity.
The Minister of Finance and Minister of Economic Development, Innovation and Export Trade, Raymond Bachand, met with the Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, and the Secretary General of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, Angel Gurría.
Participants in this 15th Conference included former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, the Secretary General of the Organization of American States, José Miguel Insulza, and the President of the World Foundation for AIDS Research and Prevention and recipient of the Nobel Prize in Medicine, Luc Montagnier. Numerous economic leaders also attended, including executives from General Electric and Gaz de France Suez.
The Québec government has been a partner of the International Economic Forum of the Americas – Conference of Montréal since its founding in 1994.
International Economic Forum of the Americas – Conference of Montréal