Canadian politician Andrew Scheer to visit India to 'repair' ties
Canada's opposition leader Andrew Scheer has said he plans to visit India to try to repair and strengthen bilateral ties six months after Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's disastrous state visit to the country damaged the relations. Conservative Leader Scheer will take his team to India for nine days in October. He plans to meet with senior government officials and business leaders. Here's more.
Trudeau will run again in upcoming Canada elections
"Trudeau's nine-day sojourn to India in February this year is likely the one the Liberals wish they could erase after numerous missteps damaged the Canadian PM's reputation both at home and abroad," the Global News reported. Meanwhile, the legislative elections in Canada are due to take place on October 21, 2019, and Trudeau announced he will run for re-election.
Scheer says India is an essential ally of Canada
"Standing with a united India is Canada's gateway to unprecedented human and economic development, and an essential alliance for Canada to strengthen in the face of shared threats," Scheer said. He also praised India for being the world's largest democracy and having one of the fastest-growing economies, saying the country in recent years is transforming into a rising power in the vast Indo-Pacific region.
No itinerary available yet for Scheer's planned visit
There's no itinerary yet available for what Conservative officials say will be a business-oriented trip by Scheer, with no Taj Mahal photo ops, the report said. Brock Harrison, a spokesman for Scheer, said India is an important strategic partner for Canada for a number of reasons, adding that Scheer believes there is work to do to strengthen the relationship between the two countries.
Canada is home to 1.2 million Indian origin people
India is one of the world's fastest growing economies, yet trade with Canada remains sluggish. In 2012, the former Conservative government set a goal of increasing two-way trade to CAD 15 billion by 2015. In 2017, it was about CAD 8.4 billion. Canada is home to over 1.2 million Persons of Indian Origin who comprise more than 3% of its population.