Prime Minister Stephen Harper made the following remarks at the North American Leaders’ Summit in Washington, D.C.:
“First of all I would like to begin by thanking you, Barack, for so graciously and so warmly, literally, hosting us here today, and I’d also like to offer my sincere condolences to you, Felipe, and through you to the people of Mexico on the passing of former President Miguel de la Madrid who I gather had much to do with the NAFTA partnership that we enjoy today.
“Canada places the highest value on the friendship and partnership among our three countries.
“We form one of the world’s largest free-trade zones, which has been of great benefit to all of our nations.
“We are also effective collaborators in the G-20, in responding to the challenges of the global recession and instability during these past few years.
“As affirmed in our Budget last week, our government is focused on creating jobs, growth and long-term prosperity for all Canadians.
“Today's Summit was a wonderful opportunity to discuss how we need to work together, as North American partners, to ensure prosperity for the citizens of our three great countries.
“I am especially pleased that the United States has welcomed Canada’s and Mexico’s interest in joining the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
“We also had useful discussions on continued cooperation in managing our borders, streamlining regulations, securing global supply chains and advancing clean energy.
“In addition, we’ve announced a broadened plan for North American pandemic preparedness, and a new North America-Central America dialogue on security, to fight transnational organized crime.
“Finally, we discussed the agenda for the upcoming Summit of the Americas in Colombia.
“Canada looks forward to continue to working with the United States and Mexico to promote democratic principles, regional stability and market-based economic growth with our partners in the Western Hemisphere.
“And once again, Barack and Felipe, I look forward to continuing our useful discussions in Cartagena.”