This petition asks for the Canadian government to create a framework that both empowers and encourages Canadian businesses and institutions to establish impactful partnerships that promote innovation and more trade with businesses and innovators from African and Caribbean nations.

WHEREAS the UN General Assembly proclaimed 2015 to 2024 the International Decade for People of African Descent, with the theme “People of African descent: recognition, justice and development” and Canada has recognized the decade;

WHEREAS Canada has an interest in improving diplomatic relations with African and Caribbean nations that nearly equals 35% of the UN’s voting community;

WHEREAS the era of COVID-19 highlighted the need for greater supply-chain diversity as existing supply lines are threatened by global disruptions;

WHEREAS in 2021 the Liberal Party of Canada called for “a strategy for economic cooperation across Africa, including support for the African Continental Free Trade Agreement, facilitation of increased infrastructure investment, and expanding partnerships in research and innovation”;

WHEREAS negotiations toward a Canada-CARICOM free trade agreement was launched in 2007;

WHEREAS the African and Caribbean nations are emerging economies that include nearly 1.5 billion people and are expected to be strategic centres of global economic growth this century;

WHEREAS Canada is home to vibrant communities with strong ancestral ties to African and Caribbean that can act as pathways for fruitful relationships between Canada and the two regions;

BE IT RESOLVED that the LPC calls on the Government of Canada to enable the growth of trade and innovation partnerships with African and Caribbean nations, institutions, and businesses, by:

  1. Offering financial support to Canadian provinces, municipalities, chambers of commerce, boards of trade, academic institutions, businesses and other organizations to support trade with African and Caribbean nations, the organization of trade missions and conferences, the development of targeted initiatives, and the establishment of exchange programs that promote innovation partnerships with African and Caribbean nations, their cities, businesses, and institutions;
  2. Adding African and Caribbean nations* (in good standing) to CanExport’s priority list;
  3. Committing to establishing active comprehensive Free Trade agreements with CARICOM and The African Continental Free Trade Area within the next five years.

Thank You for Supporting & Celebrating the International Decade For People of African Descent