Notes for a speech by the Hon. David Kilgour,
Secretary of State (Latin America and Africa),
M.P. Edmonton Southeast
at the celebration of the Independence Day
of Chile, September 18, 1999,
Delta Edmonton South, Edmonton.
It is an
honour to be here with you tonight, and
to bring greetings from our national government.
As the largest
Latin American community in Edmonton, the
Chilean community is a thriving and vibrant
part of our city.
as you gather to celebrate Chiles
Independence Day there is much to celebrate.
return to democracy in 1990 Canadas
relations with Chile have been growing steadily
and I would say they are now excellent.
Chile has made significant progress: a strong
entrenchment of democracy, a dramatic improvement
in human rights, and a solid economic performance.
there is enormous potential for further
cooperation in key sectors such as; defence
relations, peacekeeping, education, parliamentary
affairs, environment, culture and science
one of Canadas key partners in Latin
America, with Canada being the second largest
investor in Chile. The Canada-Chile Free
Trade Agreement, signed in 1996, has brought
the two countries closer together. Two-way
trade has increased dramatically, nearly
doubling form $357 million in 1992, to a
high of $717 million in 1997.
are sure to become stronger as Canada embarks
on a new level of engagement with the Americas.
We recognize that our future is directly
linked geographically, politically
and economically to that of our hemispheric
neighbours. In light of that, Canada is
hosting a number of key hemispheric events
in hopes of strengthening our relationship
with the region.
At the end
of this month the Spouses and Heads of State
and Government of the Americas will meet
in Ottawa for a conference hosted by Madame
Chrétien. In early November the 5th Americas
Business Forum and Free Trade Area of the
Americas Meeting will be held in Toronto.
Chile is a strong proponent of the FTAA.
In March of 2000 the university of Alberta
is hosting the Model General Assembly of
the OAS, with the real General Assembly
being held June 2000 in Windsor Ontario.
All of these events will lead up to the
third Summit of the Americas, to be held
in Quebec City in 2001.
In a very
real way, the next century will be that
of the Americas. So tonight as we celebrate
the Independence of Chile, let us also celebrate
what lies ahead.