/R E P E A T -- Native-Born and Foreign-Born Canadians Share Foundation of Common Values and Celebrations of Canada Day/

    Immigrants to Canada and those born in Canada agree that Canada Day
    should be spent with family, the West Coast tops places to see and
    freedom is what they value most.

    TORONTO, June 24 /CNW/ - Despite different backgrounds and places of
birth, those born in Canada and those who've immigrated here share similar
values and perceptions of Canada, according to MasterCard Canada's 2008
Priceless Index, which follows Canadians' views and attitudes about being
    When asked what Canadian values they value most, both groups selected
freedom (41 per cent) as number one followed by democracy (13 per cent) and
equality (11 per cent). Those born outside of Canada (17 per cent) are more
likely to cite diversity as a key Canadian value.
    Both groups agree that quality of life, security and beauty/environment
are reasons for residing in Canada. However, immigrants say they chose to live
here primarily for family and economic opportunities, while a quarter of those
born in Canada assume freedom and political environment are the main reasons
new immigrants come to Canada.
    "The 2008 Priceless Index looks closely at Canada's foundation: its
people," says Julie Wilson, Director, Public Affairs, MasterCard Canada.
"Regardless of our different backgrounds, the majority of both groups surveyed
identify first and foremost with being Canadian, which suggests that once
immigrants move to this country, they are quick to adopt and identify with
Canadian values, interests and activities."
    In fact, the 6th annual Priceless Index revealed that those born in
Canada and immigrants to Canada have much more in common than the country they
    -  The majority of both groups see Canada Day as an important day for
       celebration, and intend to spend it primarily with friends and/or
       family engaging in a range of activities such as watching fireworks
       and having/attending a BBQ, picnic, or festival/fair.
    -  For both Canadian-born and immigrants, the ability to engage in
       active, outdoor sports is their most favourite Canadian activity.
    -  Top selections for favourite foods include Canadian steak/beef
       (12 per cent), maple syrup (6 per cent), poutine (6 per cent) and
       hamburgers (6 per cent) among both groups.
    -  The majority of both groups, but particularly immigrants, believe that
       the ethnic foods and ingredients they look for are readily accessible
       to them in Canada.
    -  Both Canadian-born and immigrants say they would most like to visit
       the West coast, followed by the Maritimes.

    According to the 2006 Census, Canada's population is experiencing the
highest proportion of foreign-born Canadians in 75 years. Approximately one in
five (19.8 per cent) are born outside of the country(1).

    About the survey

    The Priceless Index is a national survey carried out regularly by
MasterCard. This national survey of 2,299 Canadians (1,742 Canadian-born, 577
immigrants) 18 years of age and over was carried out by telephone between May
21 and June 4, 2008 by Environics Research Group on behalf of MasterCard
Canada. Results to a survey of this size can be considered accurate to within
plus or minus 2.04 percentage points (Canadian-born plus or minus 2.35;
immigrants plus or minus 4.15), at 95 per cent.

    About MasterCard Worldwide

    MasterCard Worldwide advances global commerce by providing a critical
economic link among financial institutions, businesses, cardholders and
merchants worldwide. As a franchisor, processor and advisor, MasterCard
develops and markets payment solutions, processes over 18 billion transactions
each year, and provides industry-leading analysis and consulting services to
financial institution customers and merchants. Through its family of brands,
including MasterCard(R), Maestro(R) and Cirrus(R), MasterCard serves consumers
and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories. For more
information go to www.mastercard.com.

    (1) Statistics Canada, 2006

For further information:

For further information: Don Blair or Olivia Yu, Environics
Communications, dblair@environicspr.com, oyu@environicspr.com, (416) 969-2726,
(416) 969-2718

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