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OTTAWA REPORT

March 19, 2014   ·   0 Comments

By Lois Brown, MP
Newmarket-Aurora

Canada-Korea Free Trade Agreement (CKFTA)
This landmark agreement constitutes Canada’s first free trade agreement in the Asia-Pacific region and will provide new access for Canadian businesses and workers to the world’s 15th-largest economy and the fourth-largest in Asia.
The CKFTA is projected to create thousands of jobs for hardworking Canadians by boosting Canada’s economy by $1.7 billion and increasing exports to South Korea by 32 percent.
South Korea is not only a major economic player in its own right and a key market for Canada; it also serves as a gateway for Canadian businesses and workers into the dynamic Asia-Pacific region as a whole.
CKFTA will have a net positive benefit on Canada’s auto industry. The protective effect of Canada’s 6.1% tariff on auto imports from South Korea has been diminishing dramatically, as it is expected that soon 50% of South Korean-brand vehicles sold in Canada will enter Canada tariff-free from the US under NAFTA.
It is untenable for Canadian exporters’ to face such a financial disadvantage compared to the US and EU by having to pay South Korea’s 8% import tariff.
Since signing free trade agreements with South Korea, auto exports from the U.S. to South Korea have more than doubled (from $340 million in 2011 to over $800 million in 2013) and auto exports from the EU have doubled (from $2 billion in 2010 to $4 billion in 2013). Canadian exporters have been at a competitive disadvantage relative to their US and EU counterparts and the CKFTA will level the playing field.
The Canada-Korea Free Trade Agreement will create jobs and open the door to the lucrative Asia-Pacific market for Newmarket-Aurora businesses.

D-Day Commemoration Funding for Veterans
This year marks the 70th anniversary of D-Day and the Battle of Normandy. These historic events are one of Canada’s most significant and successful military engagements and have become an enormous source of national pride.
D-Day and the campaign that followed in Normandy would help signal the beginning of the end of the Second World War.
To commemorate the occasion, Prime Minister Stephen Harper will be leading a Canadian delegation to France to participate in special events to be held June 5-8. Accompanying him will be D-Day Veterans, representatives of Veterans’ organizations and more than a thousand Canadian youth and cadets.
Veterans Affairs Canada is making available $2,000 in financial assistance for any veteran of these two historic events wishing to attend the anniversary festivities in France.
Anyone wishing to apply should do so right away by contacting 1-866-522-2122, visiting veterans.gc.ca or emailing Normandy-normandie@vac-acc.gc.ca.
We owe a great deal to all our Veterans and they deserve our respect for the tremendous service and sacrifices they have made. This important commemoration is one way that we can show our appreciation.

Maternal, Newborn and Child Health Summit 2014
I was pleased to announce last week in Ottawa, along with Christian Paradis, Minister of International Development, on behalf of Prime Minister Stephen Harper, that Canada will host a high-level Summit on maternal, newborn and child health from May 28-30, 2014, in Toronto.
The Summit, which builds on Canada’s leadership in maternal, newborn and child health – will bring together Canadian stakeholders and experts, as well as global leaders from developed and developing countries, international organizations, civil society, the private sector, and foundations to take stock of the progress made to date and discuss the way forward.
Saving the lives of mothers and children is not only a moral imperative; it is also the foundation for building prosperous communities for this generation and the next. Canadian efforts have drawn global attention to the challenges of maternal, newborn and child health. With Canadian leadership, we can ensure that all women, newborns and children can live healthy and productive lives.

Lowering the flag on Afghanistan
The Canadian Flag was lowered at NATO’s International Security Assistance Force headquarters in Kabul for the last time on March 12.
Since 2001, Canada has deployed to the region its largest military contingent in generations, and now our mission in Afghanistan has come to a close. Over 40,000 Canadian Armed Forces members fought to defeat the threat of terrorism and to ensure the freedom of others and to build a stronger, safer world. In the course of this fight, many paid the ultimate price. We owe a great deal to these brave men and women for the sacrifices they made. I know all of Newmarket-Aurora joins me in saying that we will forever be grateful, and we will never forget.

If you would like to contact me on any issue, please call 905-953-7515 or visit my website at www.loisbrown.ca. I look forward to hearing from you.

         

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