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Oct 30, 2014 at 02:54 PM

Prime Minister of Canada highlights opportunities created by the Canada-Korea Free Trade Agreement Print E-mail Share to FacebookTweet This!
Aug 21, 2014 at 02:12 PM

August 20, 2014,Chilliwack, British Columbia

Prime Minister Stephen Harper today joined community and senior business leaders from Canadian companies for a roundtable to discuss how the Canada-Korea Free Trade Agreement will significantly boost trade and investment ties between our two countries, creating jobs and opportunities. The session was hosted by Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade.

Korea is a priority market for the Government of Canada. The two countries announced the conclusion of negotiations for the Free Trade Agreement in March 2014 and are working expeditiously through the remaining steps so that the Agreement can enter into force as soon as possible. Once implemented, the Agreement will immediately bring substantial benefits to Canadian consumers, exporters, producers and investors across all regions of the country.

Quick Facts

  • Korea is one of Canada’s largest trading partners in Asia (after China and Japan). Total merchandise trade between the two countries reached approximately $10.8 billion in 2013.
  • On the day the Canada-Korea Free Trade Agreement comes into force, Canadian businesses will immediately benefit from Korea’s removal of duties on 82 per cent of tariff lines. Once the Agreement is fully implemented, Korea will have removed duties on 98 per cent of tariff lines.
  • The Canada-Korea Free Trade Agreement is projected to boost Canada’s economy by $1.7 billion and increase Canadian merchandise exports to Korea by 32 per cent.
  • Tariff elimination under the Agreement will be particularly advantageous for Canadian businesses because average Korean tariffs are three times higher than Canada’s (13.3 per cent versus 4.3 per cent).
  • Canadian businesses will benefit from a level playing field with their competitors in the Korean market, notably competitors from the United States and the European Union.

“The Canada-Korea Free Trade Agreement, Canada’s first free trade agreement in the Asia-Pacific region, will create thousands of new jobs in Canada and provide Canadian businesses with a gateway to the Asia-Pacific region, enhancing their global competitiveness. I am pleased to have been here today with Canadian businesses to discuss the ways our country can benefit from the new trade and investment opportunities this historic agreement will provide. I would also like to thank our businesspeople for their valuable input, which helped to inform negotiations.” – Prime Minister Stephen Harper


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Aug 21, 2014 at 01:48 PM


The Government of Canada will be supporting projects selected through this new Call for Proposals by Status of Women Canada entitled Increasing Economic Prosperity for Women. These projects will engage women and others in addressing the unique challenges facing women in today’s economy, and remove barriers that prevent them from contributing fully to the growth of the economy in their communities.

The deadline for applications to be submitted for this Call for Proposals is by noon (12:00 pm Pacific Daylight Time) on October 17, 2014.

To make the process easy, applications for funding are accepted online. Please click on "Apply Now" (hyperlink) and follow the instructions to proceed with your online application.

This Call for Proposals by Status of Women Canada aligns with the Government of Canada’s number one priority which is to support jobs, growth and long-term prosperity for all Canadians.

Quick Facts

  • Projects under this Call for Proposals will engage key stakeholders – institutions, employers, sector and professional organizations and local communities - to promote the economic prosperity of women in Canada. They will also address institutional barriers and other factors that limit economic opportunities for women.
  • Through the Women’s Program at Status of Women Canada, the Government of Canada has invested more than $54 million in projects that promote women’s economic security and prosperity throughout the economy.
  • On June 26, 2014, the report of the Government of Canada’s Advisory Council for Promoting Women on Boards was released. It outlines a roadmap for improving the representation of women on public and private boards that will also build a stronger economy. One of the report’s main recommendations is that public and private sectors in Canada aspire to seeing women attain 30% of all board positions over the next five years.
  • Economic Action Plan 2014 outlined the Government’s commitment to increasing mentorship for women looking to start their own businesses and become entrepreneurs.

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Local Charities are Big Winners at Hockey Night in St. Catharines 5! Print E-mail Share to FacebookTweet This!
Aug 15, 2014 at 09:39 AM

ST. CATHARINES, Ont. — The 66 programs delivered by 39 agencies supported by the United Way of St. Catharines and District and the Parkinson’s Disease rehab program at Hotel Dieu Shaver were winners of the fifth annual Hockey Night in St. Catharines charity event.

While local fans were entertained by past, present and future NHLers on the ice at the Jack Gatecliff Arena in the Gatorade Garden City Complex — a game that saw Steve Ludzik’s Reds  defeat Rick Vaive’s Blues 11-10 — the more important score is the thousands of dollars raised for important local programs.

“There is a reason Hockey Night in St. Catharines has been the four-time winner of the United Ways Event of the Year honour,” says France Hallworth, executive director of the United Way of St. Catharines and District. “Year in and year out, it provides a fun, entertaining evening while supporting our after school programs, The RAFT, the CNIB, Community Living of St. Catharines, Community Care and a host of other initiatives that help your family, friends and neighbours.”

With five games now in the books, Hockey Night in St. Catharines, an effort spearheaded by St. Catharines MP Rick Dykstra, has raised more than $600,000. Dykstra, who skated with Rick Vaive’s Blues in this year’s game, is ecstatic to see the game continue to grow year after year.

“It has been an incredible run over the past five years, with amazing support from the local community and the hockey community,” Dykstra says. “The game continues to grow year after year, and we set the bar higher and higher. Every year, the people of Niagara help us exceed our goals. This is likely the last major event at Jack Gatecliff Arena, and we sent the old barn out in style.”

The Gatorade Garden City Complex was home to the Niagara IceDogs, who are moving into the new Meridian Centre this fall. While the Garden City complex will remain open for community use, major events will follow the IceDogs to the Meridian Centre.

Hockey Night in St. Catharines 5 saw incredible support from its sponsors, including presenting sponsor Winery and Grower Alliance of Ontario and platinum sponsors BallHockey.com, Niagara Global Developments, Music Canada, Music Counts, Walker Industries, Algoma Central Corporation, Air Canada and the IceDogs.

However, it is the players the fans pay to see, and they were not disappointed with guys like Vaive, Ludzik, Eric Lindros, Riley Sheahan, Matthew Barnaby, Olympic Gold winner Laura Fortino and Andrew Peters toiling around the ice.

“When there is a need, the hockey community rallies,” says Ludzik, who is also a co-chair of the game’s organizing committee with Dykstra. “I can’t say enough about these guys who took time out of their summer in support of some great local causes.”

Stay tuned for news about Hockey Night in St. Catharines 6, coming in the summer of 2015!

Follow the United Way of St. Catharines and District on Twitter @uwaysc. Follow Hockey Night in St. Catharines on Twitter @HNISC and keep up with the conversation with the hashtag #HNISC5. Get more information at www.hockeynightinstcatharines.com.

About Hockey Night in St. Catharines 5:

Hockey Night in St. Catharines 5 is a charity hockey game featuring Canadian MPs and elite hockey players that raises funds for the United Way of St. Catharines and District and Parkinson’s Disease Rehabilitation Program at the Hotel Dieu Shaver Health and Rehabilitation Centre. Since the initial game in 2010, Hockey Night in St. Catharines has been named the United Way’s top fundraising event three years running, and raised more than $516,000 over its first four years.


For more information, please call
Kalvin Reid
Mobile: 289-241-7936; Office: 905-346-1233

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Last Updated ( Aug 15, 2014 at 09:41 AM )
Statement by Rick Dykstra, Member of Parliament, on the situation in Gaza Print E-mail Share to FacebookTweet This!
Aug 08, 2014 at 04:53 PM

The loss of life in the Gaza conflict is regrettable, and the Government of Canada hopes for a solution that will provide long term peace in Israel and Gaza.

Israel left Gaza in 2005. This was a positive action and a great step forward towards these two peoples living together in peace and security.

That outcome will continue to prove difficult to achieve as long as Hamas resorts to terrorism.

Hamas is a terrorist entity under Canadian law.  Hamas seeks the destruction of a democratic State, Israel, and the creation of a fundamentalist Islamic theocracy through Jihad.  This is clearly outlined in the Hamas Covenant.

It is misleading and disingenuous to frame this conflict merely by the numbers of casualties on either side.  At a quick glance, with the number of dead and wounded Palestinians far greater than the Israelis, the knee jerk reaction is to blame the Israelis for this disparity.  If you couple that with the daily barrage of heart-wrenching photographs and news video of bloodied children and destroyed buildings, it is easy to understand why people react so strongly, but in fairness, there is more to this situation than the numbers of casualties demonstrate.

  • Hamas has built tunnels to launch terrorist attacks into Israel. 
  • Evidence shows that they have been using residential areas and schools to store weapons and launch rocket attacks.
  • Journalists have verified that Hamas is using Palestinians as human shields, drawing Israeli fire to their own civilians. Rockets and mortars are fired indiscriminately at civilian areas inside Israel from civilian areas inside Gaza.  Hamas launches missiles and stores weapons from homes, schools, Mosques and even UN facilities.
  • The Hamas authorities diverted tons of concrete and building materials intended for humanitarian use to the construction of the terror tunnels.

Israel has an obligation to protect its citizens from rocket attacks aimed at Israeli civilians. It has done so through the Iron Dome and precision airstrikes designed to minimize civilian casualties. The Israeli Defense Forces provides warnings for civilians include text messaging, phone calls, leaflet drops and other means.

The question to be asked of those who have written to criticize Canada’s support for Israel is have you written a similar letter to the Hamas Authorities demanding they cease holding the civilian population of Gaza hostage and stop violating international law by firing indiscriminately on Israeli population centres.

There is a critical need for a long term strategy to be implemented that prevents Hamas from re-arming and involves the demilitarization of Gaza.

I was saddened to see the latest ceasefire violated by Hamas and it is my hope in the future we can move from ceasefires that are measured in hours and days, to a situation where peace is the status quo. I support Israel for protecting its citizens. I support Israel for minimizing the loss of life in Gaza. I support Israel for its efforts to achieve a lasting peace.  If similar efforts were made by their opponents, the conflict would be over and there would be peace.

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Statement by the Prime Minister of Canada on the 100th anniversary of the start of the WWI Print E-mail Share to FacebookTweet This!
Aug 04, 2014 at 12:00 AM

August 4, 2014
Ottawa, Ontario

Prime Minister Stephen Harper today issued the following statement to mark the 100th anniversary of the start of the First World War:

“Today, Canadians join the international community in commemorating the 100th anniversary of the start of the First World War, which engulfed Europe in conflict from 1914 to 1918 and killed at least ten million combatants and millions more civilians. 

“It is a time to remember and honour the sacrifices and tremendous achievements of the more than 650,000 brave Canadians and Newfoundlanders who left their families and the comfort of their homes to serve their King and country, as well as to preserve the universal values of freedom, peace and democracy that we hold most dear.

“It is a time to remember the more than 66,000 of our selfless men and women who gave their lives during the First World War, and the estimated 172,000 more who were wounded.

“It is a source of deep national pride that the bravery and courage of our service members helped ensure Allied victories in important battles at places like Vimy Ridge, Passchendaele and Amiens. These efforts played a vital role in finally bringing about the negotiation and conclusion of the Armistice, which ended the First World War at precisely 11 a.m. on November 11, 1918.

“The dedication, courage and determination demonstrated by our brave soldiers, sailors and airmen, who stood shoulder-to-shoulder with like-minded allies to fight for what they believed in, resulted in Canada emerging as a proud, victorious nation with newfound standing in the world.

“On this important anniversary, let us recall and honour our heroes who put their lives on the line during the First World War so that right would prevail and so that Canadians and other peoples would have the opportunity to live in peace and freedom. Let us also extend our heartfelt gratitude and appreciation to all members of the Canadian Armed Forces and their families – past and present – who courageously serve our great country with the same proud Canadian tradition.

“Lest we forget.”

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Last Updated ( Aug 05, 2014 at 10:19 AM )
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