Canada's Consulting Engineering Companies Applaud New Direction of Canada's Foreign Aid Approach

OTTAWA, Dec. 6, 2012 /CNW/ - The Association of Consulting Engineering Companies (ACEC) applauds recent remarks by the Honourable Julian Fantino, Minister for the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) concerning the need to refocus our country's foreign aid priorities.

"The delivery of foreign aid is a major challenge in many parts of the world and we need the involvement of both non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and the private sector," said John Gamble, President of ACEC. "We support the creation of an environment where the private sector and NGOs can work side-by-side, leveraging their respective strengths and expertise."

Many of ACEC's 500 member firms have first-hand experience with the significant impact federal aid programs can have in both alleviating poverty and increasing self-reliance in developing countries. "Aid can take many forms, all of which can provide value. We are looking forward to an approach that puts more emphasis on community and economic infrastructure that helps create long-term self-reliance. This is an area where engineering companies can make a meaningful contribution," stated Mr. Gamble. "Infrastructure connects and strengthens communities, enables economic activity and protects the environment."

Another benefit, according to ACEC, is that these programs have the potential to showcase Canadian expertise and provide business opportunities for Canada's engineering sector. "We need not apologize if Canada's foreign aid also leads to greater opportunities for Canadian businesses," continued Gamble. Canada is the world's fifth largest exporter of engineering services and is well-regarded within the global engineering community.

ACEC and its member companies across Canada look forward to working closely with both government and NGOs as CIDA refocuses its foreign aid priorities.

The Association of Consulting Engineering Companies of Canada represents companies in Canada that provide professional engineering services to both public and private-sector clients. These services include the planning, design and execution of all types of engineering projects, as well as providing independent advice and expertise in a wide range of engineering and engineering-related fields. For more information about ACEC, please visit www.acec.ca

SOURCE: Association of Consulting Engineering Companies

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