Los Angeles, California
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I want to start by thanking President Biden and the United States for hosting us here in Los Angeles for the ninth Summit of the Americas.
We’ve built a resilient, responsive, and effective Inter-American System that makes real contributions to the lives of our citizens every day.
And we must keep working together. Especially now at a moment when our world is facing many challenges like a global pandemic, climate change, and threats to democracy and the rules-based order.
We need to deliver for people, and make sure they see themselves in the progress we make. For that, we must ensure we have strong institutions, and take action to strengthen them further.
As the region’s premier multilateral forum, the Organization of American States is uniquely qualified to promote our values and facilitate cooperation.
This week, Canada endorses the United States’ Americas Partnership for Economic Prosperity. We believe that this Partnership responds to hemispheric priorities, and that it will provide us with more tools to tackle inequality and grow the economy and the middle class.
When peace, stability and prosperity are threatened by an illegal and unjustifiable war, it is a global concern.
I visited Ukraine last month to express my support in person to President Zelenskyy and the Ukrainian people. I saw the devastation firsthand.
I want to thank our partners here who continue to send strong signals of support for Ukraine.
As you know, Russia’s actions have consequences not only in Eastern Europe, but throughout the world.
Consequences like food shortages.
In Ukraine, the grain elevators are full. They had a record harvest in the last crop year. Now Ukraine is expected to have a crop one-third smaller than last year because of the war. And Russia is blocking it from getting out. As you know, there are no sanctions on food so we need to counter Russian disinformation at every turn.
Canada recognizes the negative impact of this crisis on economies and food security in our hemisphere, and we’ll be there to help, both with short and longer-term solutions.
We’ll also continue doing our part to respond to COVID-19.
Already, we’ve invested $11.5 million to support countries in the region through the Pan American Health Organization, and through our Embassies and High Commissions.
And we’re providing an additional $50 million to the Organization’s pandemic response, as well as over 760,000 vaccine doses.
As we continue our fight against the pandemic, we must improve the resilience of our health systems. We need to ensure that they are able to meet the needs of all people, especially the most vulnerable.
Because a better future is one where no one is left behind.
That is why Canada promotes gender equality in its diplomatic, trade and international aid initiatives.
We’ll always be here to work with other governments to promote the human rights of women, girls, gender-diverse people and LGBTQ2 communities.
Everyone should be able to live a life free of discrimination and be able to make their own choices for their own bodies.
And everyone should have the opportunity to reach their full potential.
Advancing rights and economic empowerment for everyone must always include Indigenous Peoples. Their voices need to be heard in Summits like these and we call on other countries to support their meaningful participation.
Because when more diverse voices are heard, everyone benefits.
This is why it’s so important to continue fighting for our democratic values. Around the world, we’re seeing a rise in authoritarianism and a backsliding of democracy.
Canada is committed to working with our partners to improve the resilience of our democracies.
Together with Panama, we are proud to co-chair the Summit of the Americas working group tasked with developing the Inter-American Action Plan on Democratic Governance.
We are also encouraging wider membership in organizations like the Online Freedom Coalition, which Canada is chairing this year. This will help to combat misinformation, disinformation and harmful content online, while also promoting inclusion in the digital world.
Prime Minister Mottley of Barbados has been long telling us that smaller island nations are struggling to deal with a "triple crisis" that includes COVID-19, rising fuel and food prices, and climate change.
Our international financial architecture was designed long before many of the challenges we now face – including the climate crisis.
We need to work together to think creatively to address climate risks that more vulnerable countries are facing.
Canada supports concessional financing for these as-risk middle-income countries, including small island developing states, so they can build resilience.
I want to thank Mia and others for their leadership on this front.
At every forum, from Francophonie, the Commonwealth, the OAS, to the G7, the G20 and APEC, Canada will always be there to speak up for countries who aren’t at the table, and who are particularly vulnerable to climate change.
Across the Americas, we share oceans that stretch up and down the hemisphere. We share trade agreements that drive clean innovation. And above all, we share a common future.
Here at the Summit, Canada has co-sponsored an initiative with Chile to protect the Pacific Ocean. I was glad to see countries across the Americas signing on.
It’s up to all of us to keep our waters healthy.
Of course, the same goes for keeping our air clean in the fight against climate change.
At COP26, I called on the world to get to 60% of global emissions covered by pollution pricing by 2030.
I salute those of you who have put a price on pollution already.
I invite all the others to join the challenge.
Whether it’s fighting climate, strengthening our economies, keeping people safe, or addressing the impacts and root causes of irregular migration, building a better future requires efforts.
And this wouldn’t be possible without strong Inter-American Institutions and democracies.
So, again, thank you for being here. And I look forward to working with you.