Canada's relations with Trinidad and Tobago are close and long-standing. A full-time Trade Commissioner was first appointed to Port of Spain, in 1938. Official diplomatic relations were established in August 1962, immediately upon Trinidad and Tobago becoming an independent country.
In Trinidad and Tobago, Canada is represented by the High Commission of Canada in Port of Spain, which opened in 1962. The first Canadian High Commissioner was accredited in 1963.
Trinidad and Tobago is represented in Canada by the High Commission of Trinidad and Tobago in Ottawa. Trinidad and Tobago also has Consulates in Toronto and Winnipeg.
Today, the vibrant bilateral relations cover a wide spectrum of sectors including trade, education, science and technology, security, governance, culture, environment, sport and health. Both countries cooperate within the Commonwealth, the United Nations and the Organization of American States. Trinidad and Tobago has signed and ratified the Ottawa Landmines Convention and was a regional leader in ratifying and promoting the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, both initiatives strongly supported by Canada as well.
Trinidad and Tobago has one of the largest Defence Forces in the Caribbean. The Trinidad and Tobago Defence Force has a long history of training with the Canadian Forces in Canada and has been a member of Canada’s Military Training Assistance Program since the 1970s. Cooperation between police forces is also significant.
In the last decade alone, Canada has spent over CAD $1 million to send over 60 officers from Trinidad and Tobago on training. In April 2011, Canada participated in a joint Canada-United States of America-Trinidad and Tobago disaster management exercise entitled FA-HUM.
Canada has provided significant security and logistical assistance in the lead up to the Fifth Summit of the Americas, in April 2009 and the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meetings (CHOGM) in November 2009
Canada is showing its support of the government of Trinidad and Tobago in reforming the justice sector and making crime fighting a priority. The government of Canada, in a collaborative project with the United Kingdom is making an important contribution to the criminal justice reform in Trinidad and Tobago by funding the placement of a prosecutor from the UK within the office of the Attorney General of Trinidad and Tobago to guide reforms in several areas, including police investigations, effective use of witnesses and state-of-the-art technologies. Canada has programming in all three areas of rule of law: Cops, Courts and Corrections.
Canada’s program for development assistance in Trinidad and Tobago is managed by the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA).
Canada is also actively engaged in the support of good governance in Trinidad and Tobago, often providing experts for conferences in various areas such as Multiculturalism and Anti-Corruption. Canada also provided experts to help in the training of Trinidad and Tobago’s Police Complaints Authority.
The economy of Trinidad and Tobago is the largest, most diversified and most industrialized in the Caribbean. It has one of the highest rates of mineral extraction in the world.
With regard to Canada’s trade relationship with Trinidad and Tobago, bilateral merchandise trade in 2008 reached $615.1 million. Merchandise exports totalled $273.6 million and included mineral ores, machinery, paper and paperboard, copper, electrical and electronic equipment and vegetables. Imports to Canada from Trinidad and Tobago totalled $341.5 million in 2008 and included organic chemicals, iron and steel, and inorganic chemicals. Canadian investments are concentrated in the petrochemical, oil, gas and financial sectors. In fact, Canadian involvement in the Trinidadian energy sector has been increasing in recent years. Canada has a Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (FIPA) with Trinidad and Tobago.
Canadian Investments are concentrated in petrochemical, oil, gas and financial sectors. In fact, Canadian involvement in the Trinidadian energy sector has been increasing in recent years. Canada has a Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (FIPA) and a Double Taxation Agreement.
Discussions are underway between Canada and the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), which Trinidad and Tobago is a member of, aimed at achieving a modern mutually beneficial trade agreement that provides significant economic benefits and takes into account the region's capacity constraints and vulnerabilities.
Trinidad and Tobago participates in the Canadian Seasonal Agricultural Workers Program (SAWP), an organized labour mobility program, which allows for the entry of foreign workers to meet the temporary seasonal needs of Canadian agricultural producers.
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