June 23, 2009
FREDERICTON (CNB) - A two-day visit by a delegation of 13 ambassadors to Canada from member countries of the Francophonie begins tomorrow.
Minister of Wellness, Culture and Sport Hédard Albert, who is also minister responsible for the Francophonie, said that the aim of the visit is to look at opportunities for co-operation in order to develop closer ties between New Brunswick and francophone communities in Africa.
"Our participation in the international Francophonie enables us to develop ties of friendship and co-operation with the other member states and governments, and to offer New Brunswickers an increased awareness of the world," said Albert.
The ambassadors are from Mali, Burkina Faso, Côte d'Ivoire, Cameroon, Senegal, Togo, Benin, Gabon, Burundi, Rwanda, Guinea, Niger, and Madagascar.
The visit is an opportunity to enhance relations that already exist between New Brunswick and some of the Francophonie countries, and to explore opportunities for partnerships in education, vocational and technical training, university exchanges, local governance, local development, and forestry.
The ambassadors will take part in several meetings in Fredericton, and will then travel to Edmundston where they will meet with experts in the forestry faculty at the Université de Moncton - Edmundston campus.
Since the province joined the international Francophonie, New Brunswick universities, community colleges, entrepreneurs, and artists have benefited from exchanges and co-operation programs, and have developed various cultural, tourism, technological, and economic partnerships.
MEDIA CONTACT: Gisèle Regimbal, communications, Department of Intergovernmental Affairs, 506-444-4594.