Source: Consulate General of Canada News Release | February 19, 2014
OTTAWA—At the request of the Right Honourable Stephen Harper, Prime Minister of Canada, Their Excellencies the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada, and Mrs. Sharon Johnston will conduct a State visit to the Republic of India, from February 22 to March 2, 2014.
“Sharon and I are looking forward to our State visit to India, which will be centred on the themes of innovation, entrepreneurship and education, with a special focus on the contributions of women and girls,” His Excellency said. “This visit is a reflection of the importance Canada attaches to its relationship with India. Both of our countries are committed to strengthening our partnership and co-operation. The Canada-India economic relationship is strong and holds tremendous potential for broader and expanded collaboration. During our time spent in New Delhi, Bangalore and Mumbai, we will meet with government officials, representatives from the business and education sectors, and those from non-governmental organizations with the aim of advancing our economic, academic and cultural ties with our Indian counterparts.”
His Excellency will be joined by parliamentarians and an accompanying delegation of Canadians who will enhance business, academic, cultural and people-to-people ties with their Indian counterparts. These exchanges will further develop the wide-ranging and multi-faceted relationship with India, a major economic player and priority market for Canada, and will provide greater impetus to bilateral initiatives in various sectors, particularly in strategies promoting innovation, entrepreneurship and education.
State Visit to India: New Delhi (February 22 to 25)
In the capital city of New Delhi, Their Excellencies will be officially welcomed by the President and Prime Minister of India during a welcoming ceremony at Rashtrapati Bhawan, the Presidential Palace. To underscore the important friendship and co-operation between both countries, and on behalf of the people of Canada, Their Excellencies will present an inuksuk to the people of India.
During this visit, His Excellency will meet with Canadian and Indian business leaders to discuss our nations’ economic relationship at a business meeting with the Chambers of Commerce hosted by the Government of India, and at the Canada-India CEO Forum. The Governor General will also discuss the role of innovation in addressing global health challenges during the Grand Challenges Global Health Innovation Roundtable, organized by Grand Challenges Canada.
Her Excellency will discuss the opportunities and challenges faced by women researchers supported by the International Development Research Centre (IDRC), and also by women entrepreneurs. She will also visit non-governmental organizations (NGOs) providing education to underprivileged children, and free services to children diagnosed with cancer.
State Visit to India – Bangalore (February 26 and 27)
In Bangalore, Their Excellencies will meet with the Governor of Karnataka. They will visit the All India Coordinated Small Millets Improvement Project—created by IDRC and the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development (DFATD) at the University of Agricultural Sciences, in Bangalore—as well as inaugurate the new consulate general, which will oversee Canada’s expanded presence in South India.
His Excellency will discuss the importance of skills development in further building connections between Canadian and Indian institutions during a panel discussion, and participate in a Canada-India discussion on innovation hosted by the Asia-Pacific Foundation of Canada and the National Innovation Council of India.
Her Excellency will visit NGOs dedicated to helping children with HIV and to supporting Indian women entrepreneurs.
State Visit to India – Mumbai (February 27 to March 2)
While in Mumbai, Their Excellencies will meet with the Governor of Maharashtra, and pay their respects at a memorial to the 32 victims of the November 2008 terrorist attack on the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel. During a visit to Dharavi, one of the largest slums in Asia, Their Excellencies will see, first-hand, examples of India’s deep-seated entrepreneurship and various micro-businesses. They will also discuss the future of audiovisual co-production between Canada and India at Film City, one of the largest shooting locations in India.
In addition, His Excellency will have the opportunity to open the stock market at the Bombay Stock Exchange, and witness the inauguration of BIL-Ryerson DMZ India Ltd., an incubation centre for entrepreneurs supported in partnership with the Bombay Stock Exchange Institute, Ryerson University and Simon Fraser University. He will also address innovators and entrepreneurs at the Indian Institute of Technology-Bombay; business leaders at the Indo-Canadian Business Chamber Annual Convention; and the heads of various educational institutions to exchange views on skills development and the future of education in India.
Her Excellency will meet with women leaders from the private and public sectors, civil society and academia on the status of women in India, and visit a strategic philanthropy NGO co-founded and co-managed by an Indo-Canadian. She will also meet with social workers and volunteers who prevent second-generation trafficking among the children of sex workers in Asia’s largest and oldest red-light district.
Visits abroad by a governor general play an important role in Canada’s relations with other countries. They are highly valuable as they help broaden bilateral relations and exchanges among peoples.
Members of the public can follow the Governor General’s State visit to the Republic of India online at www.gg.ca, where speeches, photos and videos will be posted.
The detailed itinerary and a list of accompanying delegates will be published at a later date.
Marie-Ève Létourneau Rideau Hall Press Office 613-998-0287 [email protected]