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The economy and innovation are central to the Québec Premier’s mission to London

London, January 15, 2015 – In London on the first day of a European mission, Québec Premier Philippe Couillard called for broader ties with the United Kingdom from the standpoint of trade, research and innovation when he addressed businesspeople in the City, the financial heart of the British capital.

“Québec is a centre of innovation and shares a number of complementary sectors of excellence with the United Kingdom, including aerospace, information technologies, life sciences and clean technologies. Through the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement and the major economic projects that we are advocating, Québec is, more than ever, an ideal place for British economic decision-makers to invest,” Premier Couillard noted.

The gathering, organized by the Canada—United Kingdom Chamber of Commerce, assembled nearly 200 economic and financial decision-makers. In addition to promoting investment, the Premier outlined his government’s economic and budgetary policies and the Northern Plan and the maritime strategy, two major projects.

The United Kingdom is one of Québec’s key economic partners, and ranks third for the number of foreign subsidiaries established in Québec, which numbered over 150 in 2014. A hundred Québec firms are established in the UK. London is a global economic and financial centre. The Metal Exchange is located there, making it an essential destination to promote mining investment.

A partnership with Oxford University

During his visit, the Premier announced the signing of a scientific and academic partnership between Université Laval, Génome Québec and Oxford University. The alliance aims at the creation of an international forest genomics consortium that will focus on key scientific questions pertaining to broadening the productivity and durability of forests. John MacKay, a full professor at Université Laval and Oxford University, will head the consortium.

“The forest product industry must ensure its competitiveness against a backdrop of sweeping transformations such as climate change that are posing major challenges for our forests. The new consortium’s research will help meet these challenges through unique, solidly established expertise. It is an honour for Québec to establish high-level collaboration with Oxford University and to build on its talent in international initiatives to preserve forest resources,” Premier Couillard concluded.

The Québec Premier will visit Wales tomorrow, where he will meet, in particular, with Welsh Prime Minister Carwyn Jones


Online as of: July 16, 2015

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