Pan-Canadian visit of the President of French Republic
The State visit of the President of French Republic, François Hollande, in Canada started in Alberta on November 2nd 2014. "I came to know all Canada", he announced in Banff.
Unprecedented in the history of the French-Canadian relationship, this State visit marks an important milestone as it allows the development of a deeper cooperation with each and every Canadian provinces.
With more than 230 000 francophones in Alberta, France expressed its desire to contribute to the growth of the western provinces and territories
[FEATURE STORY] State visit in Canada, Calgary-Banff
French President François Hollande took the opportunity to meet with Jim Prentice, Prime Minister of the province of Alberta and Bob McLeod, Prime Minister of the Northwest Territories. Parallel to these meetings, round-tables headed by the French minister of National and Higher Education and Research, Mrs. Najat Vallaud-Belkacem, enabled French and Canadian delegations to exchange their views on education and research/innovation issues.
The economic potential of Alberta triggers the attention of French companies. The growth of the province attracts each year more than 100 000 migrants. Currently, engineers and trades people are the most needed.
The Northwest Territories encompasses substantial natural ressources. Notably, the province appears to be 3rd in the world regarding the exportation of diamonds.
One of the top priorities for French-Canadian cooperation will be the increase of academic exchanges. The President of the French Republic insisted on this aspect, starting with the agri-food sector.
A letter of intention has been signed between the State French Secretary for Foreign Trade and the Minister of Agriculture in Alberta.
Regarding education, initatives such as the ones that have already been put in place between Besançon regional education authority and the Calgary Board of School or also between Caen regional education authority and the province of Manitoba should be extended and inspire other similar agreements.
In the field of research and innovation, a MoU between the catalyst for the successful commercialization of geomatics technology solutions in Alberta TECTERRA and AxLR, an accelerator for technologic transfer in Montpellier-France has been signed. This MoU is the first one of its kind between Canada and France.
French President François Hollande underlined his commitment to foster mobility among the workforce, especially through the mutual recognition of credentials
Aftermath the terrorist attacks that occurred at Ottawa only a few days before the state visit, the French President stressed out the need to work together to fight against the terrorist threat.
In view of the 21st session of the Conference of the Parties to the UNFCCC to take place in Paris in 2015, the President of French Republic largely adressed the global warming as a risk for the entire humanity:
"Beyond what can sometimes differentiate ourselves because we don’t share necessarily the same interests, I know that we share similar concerns and that we will act together for the Conference of the Parties in Paris to be a success."