November 10, 2009
Goldring praises Canada-Ukraine free trade talks
Thursday Mr. Goldring attended a reception at the Embassy of Ukraine to celebrate the launch of the talks. His Excellency Ihor Ostash, Ambassador of Ukraine spoke at the event, as did Zenon Potichny, president of the Canada-Ukraine Chamber of Commerce.
“For some time I have been calling for greater recognition by the Government of Canada of the mutual opportunities involved in closer economic ties with Ukraine to accompany the already strong cultural and diplomatic ties between our two countries.” Mr. Goldring says.
I am pleased that our Government has recognized the importance of Ukraine and our Ukrainian-Canadian community. The Honourable Stockwell Day, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway, visited Ukraine in September and announced the launch of talks between Canada and Ukraine on a free trade agreement (FTA).
“Our government is once again taking action to open doors for Canadian business in new markets,” said Minister Day. “Canadian companies are steadily building a deep business presence here in areas like aerospace, communications technologies and in agriculture. Free trade negotiations could help to extend our deepening partnership. We know the support is there—on both sides.”
At subsequent meetings Canada and Ukraine will discuss a range of trade and investment issues to facilitate economic relations and fight protectionism.
Ukraine is the largest country in Europe, and is home to a highly educated population of 46 million, a diversified industrial base and substantial natural resources. Canadian merchandise exports to Ukraine have increased greatly in recent years, totalling $229.7 million in 2008, with agricultural and aerospace machinery topping the list.
An FTA with Ukraine could further open markets for Canadian exports ranging from agricultural and seafood products to machinery and pharmaceuticals. It could also help to address non-tariff barriers.
Free trade agreements also help to strengthen the Canadian economy, to create new jobs and to lower prices for Canadian consumers.