PM to attend London and NATO Summits

Ottawa, Ontario
27 March 2009

Prime Minister Stephen Harper today announced that he will participate in the London Summit on the world economy on April 1 and 2, 2009, and the NATO Summit on April 3 and 4 in France and Germany.

Finance Minister Jim Flaherty will join the Prime Minister at the London Summit, which is a follow up to the November 15 Washington Summit on Financial Markets and the World Economy.

"The London summit is an important opportunity for us to work with our international partners on long-term solutions that will help us stabilize the global financial system and restore confidence in the global economy," said the Prime Minister.  "Canada remains a world leader when it comes to guaranteeing a prudent regulatory environment and delivering targeted economic action.  I look forward to sharing this experience with my counterparts and learning first hand about the best practices in place elsewhere."

The London Summit will bring together the world’s leading developed and developing countries.  Their goal will be to set forth actions – national and collective – that are necessary to help restore global economic growth.  As with the Washington Summit, attendees will include the leaders of the G20 economies, along with the heads of government of the Netherlands and Spain and the heads of the IMF, World Bank, Financial Stability Forum, United Nations and European Commission.  Also present at the London Summit will be the chairs of the New Project for Africa’s Development and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations; these leaders come from Ethiopia and Thailand, respectively.

Minister of Foreign Affairs Lawrence Cannon, Minister of Defence Peter MacKay and Chief of Defence Staff Gen. Walter Natynczyk will join the Prime Minister at the NATO Summit.  The Summit, which will take place in Strasbourg, France, and Kehl, Germany, will mark NATO’s 60th anniversary, and be the first time two countries have jointly hosted a NATO summit.  NATO’s International Security Assistance Force mission in Afghanistan demonstrates the important role NATO can play in contributing to peace and security beyond the Euro-Atlantic region.

"Canada continues to play a leading role in the NATO-led Afghanistan mission, and the brave men and women of the Canadian Forces have sacrificed much to see this mission succeed," said the Prime Minister.  "It is important that the resolve and spirit of co-operation we see on the ground in Afghanistan be matched with a similar resolve and spirit of co-operation from each NATO government, and I will be making this case forcefully when talking to my counterparts in the Alliance."

NATO was created by the signing of the North Atlantic Treaty in Washington on April 4, 1949.  Its aim was to promote the stability of the North Atlantic area and to safeguard the freedom of its people, based on the principles of freedom, democracy, human rights and the rule of law.  Canada views the Alliance as the primary forum for security consultation and cooperation between Europe and North America.

For more information on the London Summit, please visit: www.londonsummit.gov.uk*
For more information on Canada and NATO, please visit: http://www.nato.int/cps/en/natolive/nato_countries.htm 
For more information on Canada’s engagement in Afghanistan, please visit: http://www.afghanistan.gc.ca