Minister Mackay to lead Canada's Atlantic Gateway business mission to India



    ST JOHN'S, Feb. 14 /CNW/ - The Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of
National Defence and Minister of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
(ACOA), will lead an Atlantic Gateway-focused business mission to India from
February 18 to 22, 2008. The mission will include key business forums in New
Delhi and Mumbai and promote Canada's Atlantic Gateway to Indian shippers,
business leaders, and key government representatives.
    Minister MacKay will be accompanied by provincial government
representatives and a private sector delegation representing airports, ports,
railways, and transportation-related businesses and associations active in
Atlantic Canada.
    "The development of Canada's gateways and trade corridors is part of our
government's commitment to facilitating international trade and increasing our
national competitiveness by linking North America to the world," said Minister
MacKay. "This mission demonstrates our Government's continuing partnership
with the four Atlantic provinces to develop the Atlantic Gateway initiative."
    "The Atlantic Gateway is an important part of the Government of Canada's
strategy to improve out trade competitiveness through gateways that connect
North America with the world," said the Honourable Lawrence Cannon, Minister
of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities, in support of the mission. "We
consider India to be a priority market and this mission will provide Canadian
businesses with the chance to develop and strengthen commercial ties with
their Indian counterparts."
    Ministers from all four Atlantic Provinces will participate in the
mission. They include: the Honourable Paul Oram, Minister of Business for
Newfoundland and Labrador, the Honourable Ron W. MacKinley, Minister of
Transportation and Public Works for Prince Edward Island, the Honourable Denis
Landry, Minister of Transportation for New Brunswick, and the Honourable Angus
MacIsaac, Deputy Premier, Minister of Economic Development, and Minister
responsible for the Atlantic Gateway in Nova Scotia.
    "As significant shifts in global transport and trading patterns continue,
especially in relation to the growing Asian market, Newfoundland and Labrador
and the rest of Atlantic Canada want to capitalize on the opportunities this
presents," said Minister Oram. "The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador is
pleased to be participating in this trade mission and ongoing discussions on
the gateway, and we are committed to ensuring that the initiative brings new
investment, jobs, and economic opportunities to our province."
    While in India, Minister MacKay will meet in New Delhi and Mumbai with
Indian government officials and key representatives of the Indian private
sector.

    The mission follows the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU)
between the Federal and Provincial Governments to develop the Atlantic
Gateway.

    A backgrounder with a list of the participating companies and
organizations that will make up the business delegation is attached.

    For more information on Canada's Atlantic Gateway, visit
http://www.tc.gc.ca/GatewayConnects/Atlantic/AtlanticGateway.html.

    NOTE: Members of the media are advised that Minister MacKay will be
    available to respond to media questions about the India Mission on Friday
    February 15 starting at 12:30 p.m. E.T. Interested media should call
    1-888-265-0464 and provide the conference ID (#34933548) by
    12:15 E.T. to join the call.

    
                                 BACKGROUNDER
             Canada's Atlantic Gateway Business Mission to India

    The following companies and organizations will make up the business
delegation:

    - Wes Armour, President and CEO, Armour Transportation
    - Paul Brigley, Chief Financial Officer, Halterm Limited
    - Doug Hayden-Luck, Sales Director - International Intermodal, CN
      Railways
    - Ann Janega, VP, Nova Scotia Division, Canadian Manufacturers and
      Exporters
    - Hugh Lynch, Chairman, Melford International Terminal Inc.
    - Douglas MacArthur, President, Canadian Agro Sustainability Partnership
    - John Murphy, VP Transportation, J.D. Irving Limited
    - Karen Oldfield, President and CEO, Halifax Port Authority
    - Rob Robichaud, President and CEO, Greater Moncton International Airport
    - Tom Ruth, President and CEO, Halifax International Airport Authority
    - Captain Al Soppitt, President and CEO, Saint John Port Authority
    - Ron Tepper, President and CEO, Consolidated FastFrate Inc.
    - Michael DiVirgilio, Senior VP Development, Ceres Terminals Inc.
    




For further information:

For further information: Chris Yonke, Senior Advisor, Office of the
Honourable Peter MacKay, (902) 426-4414, chris.yonke@acoa-apeca.gc.ca; Alex
Smith, Director of Communications, ACOA Nova Scotia, (902) 426-9417; Mark
King, Director of Communications, Newfoundland and Labrador Department of
Business, (709) 729-7628; (This news release is available on the Internet at
www.acoa-apeca.gc.ca under Media Room)


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