At the end of the first part of its mission in Russia, the Minister of International Relations and Minister responsible for La Francophonie, Pierre Arcand, was very enthusiastic about his reception by the Russian representatives he met and the possibilities for cooperation that were proposed.
Premier Jean Charest attended the signing of a professional qualifications mutual recognition arrangement (MRA) between the Québec Bar and the National Bar Council of France. The signing took place at the Québec Bar’s annual convention on May 30. The new arrangement was reached in conjunction with the Québec-France Agreement signed in October, 2008, and seeks to provide greater mobility for lawyers between Québec and France.
Pierre Arcand, Minister of International Relations and Minister Responsible for La Francophonie, will be making an official visit to Russia until June 7 aimed at exploring opportunities to boost exchanges between Russia and Québec, particularly in the areas of trade, education and culture.
The Minister of International Relations and Minister responsible for La Francophonie, Pierre Arcand, took part on May 28 in the launch of a major promotional campaign for Québec food products in New York, in collaboration with The Food Emporium, a well-known New York food chain.
Twelve international youth mobility projects were singled out for honours on May 27 in the National Assembly, during the first-ever LOJIQ awards ceremony. Pierre Arcand, Minister of International Relations and Minister responsible for La Francophonie, presented the top prize.
On May 28 and 29, the Minister of International Relations and Minister Responsible for La Francophonie, Pierre Arcand, is carrying out a mission to New York City to hold discussions with key political players on various issues pertaining to trade, the environment, security and transportation. It is the Minister’s fourth mission to the U.S. and his second visit to New York State.
Québec artists will have a prominent place at the next Avignon Festival this coming July 7 to 29. For its 63rd edition, the Festival has selected Québec author and director Wajdi Mouawad as its associate artist. Quebec stage, literary and film artists will also be on the program.
Pierre Arcand, Minister of International Relations and Minister responsible for La Francophonie, released the 2009-2014 Action Plan adopted under Québec’s International Policy at a conference lunch hosted on May 25 by the Montréal Council on Foreign Relations (CORIM). In the words of Minister Arcand, “This Action Plan, which is the result of broad collaboration between government departments in various sectors, ensures synergy with respect to international efforts deployed by the government as a whole, and thus bolsters Québec’s capacity for influence and action abroad.”
The Minister of International Relations and Minister Responsible for La Francophonie, Pierre Arcand, is pleased that the National Assembly has passed the Act respecting the creation of the Office Québec-Monde pour la jeunesse. The office will be mandated to develop relations between young people in Québec and their counterparts in territories and countries not covered by one of the three existing youth offices: the Office franco-québécois pour la jeunesse, the Office Québec/Wallonie-Bruxelles pour la jeunesse and the Office Québec-Amériques pour la jeunesse.
Over 400 music professionals attended the UK’s Royal Philharmonic Society Music Awards ceremony, during which Québec conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin was singled out for the 2009 Young Artists prize.
Some 400 experts from over 80 countries are taking part in the 7th meeting of the ISO (International Organization for Standardization) Working Group on Social Responsibility in Québec City through May 22. The purpose of the meeting is to define the ISO 26000 standard, which will provide guidelines for incorporating the principles of sustainable development into the management of organizations. Premier Jean Charest and the Minister of International Relations and Minister Responsible for La Francophonie, Pierre Arcand, addressed the event’s participants.
Why do certain federated states play a role on the international stage? A variety of university activities are being held this spring to answer this question. Québec, which has been active internationally for 40 years and has a network of government offices in 20 countries around the world, is often singled out as a model. In an interview broadcast by VRT, when asked about the new Flanders House in New York City, Belgian Prime Minister Herman Van Rompuy pointed to the example of Québec’s network of government offices abroad, which exists alongside Canada’s network of embassies.
Maryse Gaudreault, member of the National Assembly for Hull and parliamentary assistant to the Minister of International Relations and Minister Responsible for La Francophonie, embarked on a mission to Haiti on May 20 where she will attend the third meeting of the joint committee for the Haitian governance enhancement project (PARGEP). The meeting will lead to the adoption of the 2009-2010 action plan.
Pierre Arcand, Minister of International Relations and Minister Responsible for La Francophonie, recently marked the 25th anniversary of the Québec/Wallonia-Brussels Youth Office (OQWBJ). The organization, which aims to develop relationships between young people in Québec, Wallonia and Brussels, offers logistical and financial support to more than 600 individuals every year completing international internships in the cultural, business and environmental sectors.
On behalf of Pierre Arcand, Minister of International Relations and Minister Responsible for La Francophonie, Maryse Gaudreault, the Minister’s parliamentary assistant and member of the National Assembly for Hull, presented the 2009 Hector Fabre award to the University of Québec at Chicoutimi (UQAC) for a project involving the international provision of university programs. The award, which includes a $25,000 cash prize, was presented on May 15 during the meeting of the Union of Québec Municipalities (UMQ) in Gatineau.
Pierre Arcand, Minister of International Relations and Minister Responsible for La Francophonie, will be meeting with key political and economic stakeholders in Chicago on May 14 and 15, in line with the Government of Québec's new US strategy, which is currently being developed. This will be Mr. Arcand’s third visit south of the border and his first to the state of Illinois, Québec’s seventh largest trading partner in the US.
Seventy cooperation projects between Québec and Wallonia-Brussels will be launched over the next two years in the fields of culture, language, science and technology, the economy, education and vocational training. The projects were selected during the sixth meeting of the Commission mixte permanente Québec/Wallonie-Bruxelles (Québec/Wallonia-Brussels standing joint committee), held in Québec City from May 11 to 14.