Presentation of Letters of Credence (Republic of Korea, Republic of South Africa, Kingdom of Spain, Montenegro)
Rideau Hall, Tuesday, May 2, 2017
What a privilege to welcome you to Rideau Hall and to Canada today.
Diplomacy is of great importance in this complex, interconnected world. At its best, diplomacy brings people together. It bridges differences. It builds on the strengths of nations, rather than dividing by weaknesses.
That’s the kind of diplomacy Canada seeks to engage in with the countries you represent, and I thank you for being here.
Ambassador Shin, you have served your country for many years as a diplomat. This gives you a wealth of experience upon which to draw in strengthening the relationship between Korea and Canada. You have travelled widely and held posts in a variety of spheres, and I look forward to your presence here in Canada.
I had the pleasure of visiting Seoul in February 2013 to mark the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Canada and Korea. Today, the Republic of Korea continues to be a key partner for Canada in the Asia-Pacific region and globally. This is a moment of opportunity between our two countries, with the Canada-Korea Free Trade Agreement and the Science, Technology and Innovation Cooperation Agreement as notable mechanisms of co‑operation. Canada looks forward to hosting the annual Canada-Korea Strategic Dialogue in Ottawa later this year.
High Commissioner Dlamini-Mntambo, allow me to warmly welcome you and your three children to our country. I understand that you began your career as a teacher. This gives us something in common, as I spent many years in post‑secondary education prior to becoming governor general. I have no doubt that you will make a strong contribution to relations between South Africa and Canada. I wish you and your family all the best as you make Canada your new home.
The official relationship between South Africa and Canada dates back to 1939. Today, our broad and deep relationship with South Africa includes political, commercial and development co‑operation. I had the pleasure of visiting South Africa in May 2013, and I know that great promise exists between our two countries in trade and investment, as well as in energy, education, science, technology and innovation. Let us work together to deepen the co‑operation that exists between Canada and South Africa.
Ambassador Ruiz Molero, it gives me great pleasure to extend greetings to you as Spain’s representative to Canada. You have held numerous diplomatic positions in your career, and I look forward to your contribution to building the relationship between our two countries. I also understand that you and your family have yet to experience a “real winter”! Well, you’ve come to the right place! I wish you and your family the very best as you settle into your new home.
Spain and Canada enjoy an excellent relationship and have much in common in our approach to global issues. Our friendship is based on common values, people-to-people ties and mutually beneficial commercial relations. As members of NATO and the UN, we seek security, democracy and human rights within a multilateral framework. We also share vibrant academic relations and a strong youth mobility program, which can only enhance our shared well‑being. Canada looks forward to continued co‑operation with Spain in the years to come.
Ambassador Kaludjerovic, you have enjoyed a lengthy and distinguished career as a politician, advisor and diplomat. This positions you well to advance the relationship between Canada and Montenegro. I also understand you have spent a considerable portion of your career representing your country at the United Nations, and that you were Montenegro’s first ambassador to the UN in 2007. Now, ten years later, I am very pleased to wish you well as you undertake this new stage in your career.
The relationship between Canada and Montenegro is positive and has potential for further development. I am pleased to note that our commercial and diplomatic ties are growing. Montenegro also plays a constructive role in the Western Balkans and is a valued contributor to multilateral military efforts beyond its borders. Canada looks forward to continued co‑operation and friendship with Montenegro in the years to come.
To you all: congratulations once again on your new roles and thank you for your commitment to working with Canada. As you know, 2017 marks the 150th birthday of our country, so your timing is very good! You are very welcome here, so let us work together in a spirit of partnership and co‑operation.
I look forward to seeing you again soon.