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



    OTTAWA, 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 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 which 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 Denis Landry, Minister of Transportation
for New Brunswick, the Honourable Ron W. MacKinley, Minister of Transportation
and Public Works for Prince Edward Island, the Honourable Angus MacIsaac,
Deputy Premier, Minister of Economic Development, and Minister responsible for
the Atlantic Gateway in Nova Scotia, and the Honourable Paul Oram, Minister of
Business for Newfoundland and Labrador.
    "The Atlantic Gateway is key for New Brunswick in its on-going pursuit to
be self-sufficient by 2026," said Minister Landry. "As part of this effort,
New Brunswick is partnering with the federal government and the private sector
to improve its transportation network and update its policies. This will
increase trade volumes and generate new investment, new jobs, and greater
economic opportunities for New Brunswickers. During the trade mission to
India, New Brunswick will be working with the private sector to bring this
message to India's shippers and business leaders."
    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; Tracey
Burkhardt, Director of Communications, New Brunswick Department of
Transportation, (506) 453-5634; (This news release is available on the
Internet at www.acoa-apeca.gc.ca under Media Room)


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