Trudeau pushes exchange with China
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said that it’s time for Canadians to once again show the leadership that shapes the way the West engages with China, no matter what concerns about values and human rights exist on either side.
Trudeau made the comments at a meeting with Chinese media on Oct 7.
“We’re watching China change from being simply an export economy to an import country with incredible opportunity for Canada,” said Trudeau. “Three hundred million members of the Chinese middle class have to be consumers and purchasers of good quality goods from Canada, whether it will be agricultural or manufacturing, there is a tremendous opportunity for small- and medium-sized businesses in Canada to actually sell on the Chinese market.”
Talking about the economic opportunities and challenges that Canada now faces, Trudeau encouraged Canadian companies to be more engaged with the Chinese economy, mentioning Alibaba, whose chairman, Jack Ma, he met with during an official visit to China one month ago.
“It was also great to settle the canola issue because our western farmers are very pleased that they now have access to the Chinese market,” said Trudeau of the MOU signed during Premier Li Keqiang’s visiting to Canada two weeks ago. The four-year $2 billion deal allows Canadian canola to continue to be exported to China.
According to Trudeau, Canada and China are establishing regular robust conversations on such difficult issues as human rights and the rule of law, with the priorities of both sides being to find ways to work together and engage with the world.
“I feel that my father was instrumental in shaping the way that the Western world engaged with China as of the early ’70s,” Trudeau said. “He really demonstrated how the world could work with China to create opportunities on both sides.
“Now we’re at a point where China is in rapid transformation away from being solely based on manufacturing and exporting into strong consumers as well,” he continued. “So I think there is an opportunity for Canadians to once again show the leadership that shapes the way the West can engage with China.”
Trudeau noted that 2018 would be the year of CanadaChina tourism and that Canada planned to double its trade with China by 2025.
“We look forward to welcoming many Chinese tourists to Canada, and I also know that many Canadians will be excited about going to discover how beautiful China is,” he said.
“The Chinese and Canadians will be important friends and allies as we continue create prosperity for our citizens and hardworking middle class,” Trudeau concluded.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (second from left), along with Members of Parliament (from left) Arnold Chan, Shaun Chen and John McCallum, meet with members of the Chinese media on Oct 7 in Markham. Justin Trudeau, Canadian Prime Minister