EDC to establish representation in the GCC

    ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates, Nov. 14 /CNW Telbec/ - Export
Development Canada (EDC) today announced it will establish permanent
representation in Abu Dhabi to foster increased trade between Canada and the
Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf (GCC) and Yemen. The
announcement came as Minister of International Trade David Emerson is in the
UAE, leading a Canada-Arab Business Council trade mission to the region.
    "Canadian exports to the GCC and Yemen have been growing at a significant
pace, in keeping with the region's increasing importance as an economic hub in
the Middle East," said Eric Siegel, President and Chief Executive Officer of
EDC. "EDC's permanent representation will help Canadian companies to deepen
their commercial relations in this vital region."
    Abu Dhabi joins Mumbai, New Delhi, Beijing, Shanghai, Kuala Lumpur,
Moscow, Warsaw, Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, Mexico City, Monterrey and Santiago
as a site of permanent EDC representation.
    "Canadian exports to the GCC have grown by 140 per cent since 2001," said
Minister Emerson in an address to the Canadian Business Council in Abu Dhabi.
"As the region continues on its course of economic diversification, it's going
to need an unshakeable foundation of transportation systems, power generation,
environmental protection and urban planning. Canadian industries are widely
recognized in these areas and are exceptional potential partners for such
    In 2007, EDC has already facilitated more than $1 billion in Canadian
exports and investments to the GCC-the political and economic union formed by
the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Saudi Arabia, Oman, Qatar, Bahrain and
Kuwait-and Yemen, a 20 per cent increase over EDC's volume for the region for
the full year in 2006. Growing sectors of interest to Canadian exporters and
investors include oil and gas, construction and engineering services. An
estimated $1.5 trillion in construction and infrastructure projects are
underway in the region. More than 70 Canadian oil and gas companies are active
in the GCC and Yemen, and more than 30 Canadian infrastructure and
construction firms are active in the UAE alone.
    "EDC is aggressively expanding its global network of representations to
deepen its long-term relationships with local buyers and borrowers, the key
customers of Canadian exporters and investors," said Siegel. "EDC's efforts to
help Canadian exporters and investors in opportunity-rich, but often higher
risk, emerging markets is directly driving a significant increase in our
overall business volume." Almost one third of EDC's business volume in the
first half of 2007, $12 billion, was in trade in emerging markets, a 58 per
cent increase from last year.
    The Abu Dhabi-based EDC representative will work to identify transaction
opportunities for Canadian exporters and investors through relationship
development, partnering with local banks, companies and intermediaries,
collaborating with Canadian Embassy and Consulate General officials, local
chambers of commerce and key industry associations, and providing enhanced
market intelligence. EDC expects to have a representative in place in April

    EDC is Canada's export credit agency, offering innovative commercial
solutions to help Canadian exporters and investors expand their international
business. EDC's knowledge and partnerships are used by 6,400 Canadian
companies and their global customers in up to 200 markets worldwide each year.
EDC is financially self-sustaining and is a recognized leader in financial
reporting, economic analysis and has been named one of Canada's Top
100 Employers for seven consecutive years.

For further information:

For further information: Phil Taylor, Export Development Canada, (613)
598-2904, ptaylor@edc.ca

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