CCCJ Conversations: The Honourable Ed Fast

CCCJ Conversations: The Honourable Ed Fast, Canada's Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway

In the next instalment of the CCCJ's ongoing "Conversations" series, Canada's Minister of International Trade and for the Asia-Pacific Gateway the Honourable Ed Fast speaks with CCCJ Chairman Wilf Wakely, and former Japanese Ambassador to Canada and Chair of the chamber's Honorary Board of Advisors Sadaaki Numata. In a wide-ranging interview, Minister Fast – who was in Japan in April on a trade mission with information technology and medical imaging firms – emphasises that Canada is a "welcoming investment environment" for Japanese firms. He also touches on ongoing Japan-Canada EPA negotiations, stressing the need to keep on finding ways to remove bilateral trade barriers and "make sure [the EPA] is a quality agreement." Furthermore, he points out that by luck of geography, Canada's British Columbia ports are closer to Japan than any others on North America's west coast, making Canada a natural logistics hub for Japanese exporters.

"We need to move [the Japan-Canada] relationship to a brand new level," he concludes.