Québec’s Minister of International Relations and Minister responsible for La Francophonie, Pierre Arcand, underlined in the National Assembly the first anniversary of the Québec-France agreement on mutual recognition of professional competence, signed in Québec City on October 17, 2008, by Premier Jean Charest and French President Nicolas Sarkozy.
The Washington Center for Internships and Seminars and the Ministère des Relations internationales (MRI) celebrated the 10th anniversary of their partnership on October 3 at an event at HEC Montréal. Specializing in organizing internships in the US capital, the Washington Center has welcomed nearly 100 students from Québec under the auspices of a program launched with the MRI in 1999.
Pierre Arcand, Québec’s Minister of International Relations and Minister Responsible for La Francophonie, travelled to Plattsburgh on October 19 to address the Plattsburgh North County Chamber of Commerce and to discuss the proposed Montréal-New York high-speed rail line, a top-priority project for both the governments of Québec and New York State.
Nine of the best and most innovative companies from Québec’s green economy sector participated in the 2nd Atlanta International Environmental Trade Mission from October 5-9, co-hosted by the Atlanta Development Authority and the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with the Québec Government Office in Atlanta and the Ministère du Développement économique, de l'Innovation et de l'Exportation.
A major delegation of Québec horticulturists took part in the Amsterdam Horti Fair held from October 13 to 16, 2009. The tenth edition of the international horticulture trade fair drew 47,000 visitors from around the world.
Québec’s Minister responsible for Seniors, Marguerite Blais, carried out a mission to Belgium on October 13 and 14. The greying of the population is a major social policy issue in both Wallonia and Québec. Indeed, people aged 65 and over account for 16% of the population in Québec, and the figure is similar for Wallonia. Minister Blais’s visit was an opportunity for the Government of Québec to tap into the expertise and experience of its Walloon partner, with a view to boosting its effectiveness in creating favourable conditions for seniors’ self-fulfilment.
At the end of the recent mission that he led to China, Minister of International Relations and Minister responsible for La Francophonie Pierre Arcand announced the signing of a higher education agreement and took stock of the agreements signed by the representatives of various companies who accompanied him on the trip. Among other things, the mission was aimed at raising awareness of Québec’s environmental products and services in the strategic Chinese market.
On mission to Japan, Minister of International Relations and Minister Responsible for La Francophonie Pierre Arcand met with the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Koichi Takemasa. This marks Mr. Takemasa’s first meeting with a foreign diplomat since the election of the new Hatoyama government on August 30, 2009.
Québec’s Minister of Education, Recreation and Sports, Michelle Courchesne, voiced Québec’s views during the Ministerial Round Table on Education held in Paris on October 9 and 10 as part of the 35th Session of the UNESCO General Conference. This is the first time that a Québec cabinet minister has taken the floor during a Ministerial Round Table held within the framework of a program of the General Conference, UNESCO’s main policy-setting body.
Further to the announcement made at the Cannes Film Festival in May 2009, Telefilm Canada, Quebec’s Cultural Enterprise Development Corporation (SODEC), the French Community of Belgium’s Cinema and Audiovisual Centre (CCA), France’s National Centre for Cinema and Animation (CNC) and Luxembourg’s Film Fund, in partnership with Switzerland’s Federal Cultural Office (OFC), are pleased to launch a call for applicants for the Francophone Film Development Assistance Fund (FFADC).
A number of international experts are in Québec City from October 13 to 15 to discuss rural development issues and their impact on prosperity during the OECD Annual Rural Development Conference. The event was launched in the presence of Aart de Geus, Deputy Secretary-General of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, Nathalie Normandeau, Deputy Premier, Minister of Natural Resources and Wildlife and Minister responsible for the Northern Plan, and Laurent Lessard, Minister of Municipal Affairs, Regions and Land Occupancy.
Québec’s Minister of Sustainable Development, Environment and Parks, Line Beauchamp, was in Brussels on October 6 and 7. With just two months to go before the Copenhagen Summit, the Minister’s visit was a chance for her to present Québec’s positions on climate change and emphasize the role of federated states and regions in implementing the decisions that will be made in Copenhagen. “It’s a prerequisite for achieving the objectives,” she said. Indeed, federated states and regions can help meet greenhouse gas reduction targets through legislation and regulations, and in exercising the powers within their jurisdiction.