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Executive Council
June 29, 2009

Premier to Visit European Union

Promoting the province is an integral part of ensuring Newfoundland and Labrador seizes opportunities, attracts investment and is well understood on the international stage. To that end the Honourable Danny Williams, Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador, will travel to the European Union (EU) this week to meet with trade, fisheries and other officials.

�Newfoundland and Labrador has come of age in the past few years, and we are being recognized on the world stage as an innovative and dynamic economy with tremendous potential,� said Premier Williams. �We want to ensure that our friends and colleagues in the European Union see our province as both a land of opportunity and a key economic participant in the Canadian federation. From our historic fishery, our tourism potential and our ocean technology, to our emergence as an energy warehouse, we have much to offer and I plan to share this with officials during these meetings. Economists say that our province will lead this country in growth next year, and we want to ensure we spread the good word about what is happening in Newfoundland and Labrador.�

Premier Williams will be meeting with the following individuals: Baroness Catherine Ashton, EU Commissioner for Trade; Joe Borg, EU Commissioner for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries; Juan Carlos Mart�n Fragueiro, Secretary General of the Sea; and Diego L�pez Garrido, Secretary of State for the European Union.

�I also want to ensure that EU officials clearly understand our province�s position vis-�-vis the current Canada-EU Trade negotiations,� added Premier Williams. �We believe strongly in free trade and support greater trade between our province and the EU. However, we must ensure that our interests are protected and sufficiently promoted at the international level. For example, the elimination of tariffs on seafood products is particularly important to our fishery and something that must be looked after in the context of any Canada-EU trade agreement. This is just one of many issues that we will discuss in addition to the opportunities for investment and success in this province.�

Premier Williams said that in addition to trade issues, he will also discuss the proposed ban on seal products which has yet to be approved by the EU Council of Ministers.

�I particularly look forward to meeting with Spanish officials and fishing industry representatives,� said Premier Williams. �Newfoundland and Labrador and Spain have a long history dating back to the 1500s. Next month, a delegation of Spanish officials will be visiting the province and I look forward on both occasions to sharing information and learning from one another.�


Media contacts:

Elizabeth Matthews
Director of Communications
Office of the Premier
Roger Scaplen
Press Secretary
Office of the Premier
709-729-4304, 727-0991

2009 06 29                               2:30 p.m.

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