Prime Minister Trudeau delivers remarks at the Business 7 Summit
Thank you for being here today and taking part in this important discussion. As you all know, Canada is proud to welcome the G7 Summit this summer in Charlevoix. For all member countries, it will be an opportunity to refocus their attention on the most important issues and to find sustainable solutions that will make a genuine difference in people’s lives. We are impatiently waiting for this summer’s summit, but fortunately for us, the presidency gives us the chance to experience the G7 the entire year, with partners like you.
As many of you know we’ve already announced the five themes that will guide the G7 program in June, including investing in economic growth that works for everyone and preparing for the jobs of the future. We chose these themes specifically because we think they reflect the new challenges facing businesses and workers today. The business world is entering a new era. Our world is constantly evolving and the rapid pace of change is disrupting existing business models. To succeed businesses now have to constantly innovate and be at the forefront of their industry.
Workers are worried about their future and the future of their families. Many feel left behind by globalization, are wary of the technological advances that could compromise their jobs. This is not an issue unique to Canada. All the G7 countries must come to terms with this situation.
People are worried about their jobs, worried about their future, worried that there might not be a place for them in the new global economy. The anxiety they’re feeling is justified. The tide of globalization has left many folks behind. So businesses and governments cannot neglect the responsibility that we have towards the people who work for them or who elect them.
Together we must lay out the path to follow. We need a long-term strategy, which will ensure the success of the next generation of workers and entrepreneurs.
In Canada we’ve taken important steps in the right direction. To give folks a real chance to succeed in the new economy, we’ve invested in skills and training. This is great news for Canadians who have the tools for the jobs of tomorrow and for business who needs skilled workers to stay competitive. Indeed, as part of last week’s ministerial meeting on that topic, Canada announced it will be hosting a conference on the jobs of tomorrow and the future of AI this fall. This is part of our commitment to work with our partners to make sure that technological advances are synonymous with progress for all citizens.
This government is also doing more to grant unparalleled market access to businesses and consumers alike. Through deals like CETA and CPTPP, we’ve made it easier for Canadian businesses, including small businesses to reach new customers, and cheaper for Canadians and their families to buy from our partners.
Now we won’t stop there. Our Trade Minister was just in Paraguay to announce the launch of Free Trade negotiations with the Mercosur, which will, we hope, will lead to more opportunities for Canadian businesses in South America.
You would have also probably noticed that gender equality figures among the priorities this year. It is the underlying theme of our presidency. In Canada, as it is throughout the world, a large part of economic growth and the labour force, which we have witnessed in the past several decades, is due to women who have joined the labour force and transformed the labour market. No country can hope to reach its full potential without the full participation of all its citizens, thus obviously women. Governments and companies can no longer close their eyes on this.
Including more women is not just the right thing to do, or the smart thing to do, it’s the only thing we need to do if we’re able to move forward as an economy.
Dear friends, we are very much looking forward to welcome the world here this summer. This will be an opportunity to learn from one another and to advance our shared priorities. That said, we still have a lot of work to do. More than ever, we need your perspectives and your experience to enlighten our decision-making. That is why we have multiplied our departmental meetings and discussions like this one.
I’m here today to hear from you and work with you so that together we can develop policies that keep our businesses competitive and ensure that our workers are able to fully share in the prosperity we’re creating.
With your help, we will be able to develop concrete and long-lasting solutions and make the G7 Summit a great success. Thank you very much.
Thank you so much for contributing with your presence today.