On May 8, Pierre Arcand, Minister of International Relations and Minister responsible for La Francophonie, took part in the signing ceremony for an agreement between Montréal International and the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), under which WADA will keep its secretariat in Montréal until 2021. The document was signed on the WADA premises by John Fahey, WADA President, David Howman, WADA Director General, and André Gamache, President and CEO of Montréal International.
Strengthening economic ties between Québec and Japan topped the agenda at the meeting between Pierre Arcand, Minister of International Relations and Minister Responsible for La Francophonie, and Hiroaki Isobe, Japan’s new Consul General in Montréal, on April 30 in Québec City. During his first official visit to the capital, Mr. Isobe also met with Premier Jean Charest and several members of his government, as well as with other Québec political figures.
At the European Union–Canada Summit today in Prague, European Council President Mirek Topolanek, EU High Representative Javier Solana, European Commission President José Manuel Barroso and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced the start of free-trade negotiations leading up to an economic partnership agreement between Canada and the European Union.
On April 30, David Fetter, US Consul General in Québec City, unveiled a plaque commemorating the 175th anniversary of the US’s consular presence in Québec at a ceremony attended by Pierre Arcand, Minister of International Relations and Minister Responsible for La Francophonie.
Exhibitors from around the world were in Brussels from April 28 to 30 to take part in the international European Seafood Exposition. The trade fair provides a unique opportunity to arrange for the export of Québec products and form business partnerships in Europe. It is also an ideal venue for comparing products and suppliers, learning about emerging trends and tasting new products before they reach the consumer market. Over 1,500 exhibitors from 87 countries participated.
Brussels, March 4, 2009 — SNC-Lavalin1 is pleased to announce that Belgium-based BV2, a key pharmaceutical and biotechnology engineering firm in the Benelux countries, is joining forces with SNC-Lavalin in Europe.2 With a workforce of 63 employees, BV2 is headquartered in Onze-Lieve-Vrouw-Waver near Mechelen (north of Brussels).
A group of Australian parliamentarians headed by the President of the Federal Senate of Australia, John Joseph Hogg, made a visit to Québec City on April 20. Meetings held with representatives of the Québec government during the visit enabled Québec to promote its advantages as a partner of interest when it comes to fighting forest fires, developing the mining sector and administering Aboriginal affairs.
On April 27, the European Union member states and the European Commission gave the green light to pursuing trade liberalization with Canada. Over the past two years, Québec has paid a key role in promoting a new-generation economic partnership agreement, which is expected to benefit all Canadian provinces and all EU member states.
French and Québec authorities finalized 14 mutual recognition arrangements (MRAs) in Paris on April 27. The MRAs were signed during the first meeting of the bilateral committee responsible for implementing an agreement between France and Québec on recognition of professional qualifications, co-chaired by Pierre Arcand, Québec’s Minister of International Affairs and Minister responsible for La Francophonie, and Alain Joyandet, France’s Secretary of State for Cooperation and La Francophonie.
During his recent visit to Montréal for a series of concerts at Place des Arts, French singer Charles Aznavour was made an Officer of the National Order of Québec. His award was presented by Premier Jean Charest on April 25.
Pierre Arcand, Minister of International Relations and Minister Responsible for La Francophonie, offered a very positive assessment of his recent trip to Germany and Austria. The Minister met with a number of Québec’s major partners with a view to reinforcing bilateral cooperation and contributing to the realization of the proposed Canada-EU economic partnership agreement.
The BIXI self-serve bicycle system of the City of Montréal won first prize in the “Energy and Sustainability” category at the Edison Awards on April 1 in Mountain View, California. These awards, which are inspired by the famous American inventor, are awarded annually for the most innovative products in North America. The Québec Government Representative in Los Angeles, Denis Turcotte, was in attendance to receive the award on behalf of Mayor Gérald Tremblay.
During a ceremony in Linz, Austria on April 22, Pierre Arcand, Minister of International Relations and Minister Responsible for La Francophonie, presented Kent Nagano, musical director of the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal (OSM), with a symbolic baton paying tribute to the Orchestra’s first European tour under his direction. The event marked the OSM’s first concert in Linz.
The Orchestre symphonique de Montréal (OSM) launched its first European tour under the direction of conductor Kent Nagano with a sold-out concert in Valencia, Spain, on April 15. The Government of Québec is a co-presenter of the six-country, 13-concert tour. Government support for the series of performances is coordinated by the Ministère des Relations internationales.
Québec’s Minister of International Relations and Minister responsible for La Francophonie, Pierre Arcand, is carrying out a mission to Berlin, Munich and Linz from April 18 to 25. The Minister’s goal is to consolidate economic and political ties with Québec’s partners Germany and Upper Austria.