Premier Jean Charest, accompanied by Minister of Economic Development, Innovation and Export Trade Raymond Bachand, began a three-day mission to Davos, Switzerland, on January 29. The purpose of the trip is to promote investments in Québec and work toward the creation of an economic partnership between Canada and European Union. Premier Charest and Minister Bachand are also taking part in the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum, attended by economic and political leaders from around the world.
A record 41 heads of state are participating in the 39th World Economic Forum meeting, held under the theme “Shaping the Post-Crisis World.” In the words of Premier Charest, “In today’s context, this Forum will allow us to discuss current issues with economic and political leaders from around the world. It is an opportunity to gather a great deal of information and share Québec’s experience and viewpoints. It is also a chance to discuss the effects of the global slowdown, as well as ways to limit the impact on our economies. We are preparing for the recovery, to enable Québec to bounce back after the economic storm. We want to be at the forefront of changes with an impact on the world economy, not just react to them.”
Charest and Bachand will take advantage of their stay to meet with political and business figures — a chance for them to find out about measures implemented outside Québec to minimize the impact of the global economic crisis. “The Government of Québec’s objective is to stay abreast of the global economic situation in order to choose the best ways to support businesses affected by the current situation by backing the deployment of pivotal projects,” said Bachand.
Davos is also an opportunity for Charest and Bachand to speak with CEOs of leading multinationals and encourage them to invest in Québec or discuss their existing investments in the province. According to Premier Charest, “Québec has a lot to offer. It’s an opportunity for us to highlight the quality of Québec manpower, our low operating costs, our programs that favour research and innovation, and the availability of large amounts of clean, reliable energy. We are working actively to attract investment projects and develop a new economic space for Québec.”
World Economic Forum