As High Commissioner for Canada to the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, I am delighted to represent Canada in this cordial and dynamic country working to enhance our already important bilateral relations. Trinidad and Tobago is a major partner for Canada in the Caribbean and the hemisphere.
Our bilateral relationship covers a wide variety of areas including trade, security, education, health, justice and governance.
Prime Minister Harper has made Trade a priority for Canada in the world. This is already a reality in Trinidad and Tobago as it is the largest Canadian Export market and second import market in CARICOM. Canadian investment is estimated at 9.5 billion, especially in the energy sectors and the financial sector. Trinidad and Tobago has provided their continued support for the advancement of negotiations for the Canada-CARICOM Free Trade Agreement.
In the security sector, Canada provides cooperation and assistance in the form of training and capacity building in fields such as law enforcement, border services and the military to deal with issues such as drugs, organized crime, health pandemics and natural disasters. Canada is supporting Trinidad and Tobago justice reform in several areas including police investigations, effective use of witnesses and state of the art technologies.
Some 100 years ago, Canadian Presbyterians missionaries established educational institutions in the country. Today, many Canadian universities have signed cooperation’s agreements with universities in Trinidad and Tobago and numerous Trinbagonian students are studying each year in Canada. They are eligible for scholarships such as the Emerging Leaders in the Americas Program (ELAP) and Canada-CARICOM Leadership Scholarships.
The High Commission has a Foreign Policy and Diplomacy sector and trade commissioner service. It provides consular and passport services to Canadians living in or visiting Trinidad and Tobago. It has an important immigration service covering over 20 countries of the Caribbean. Our 60 employees work with professional dedication to reinforce the cooperation between Canada and Trinidad and Tobago.
As its national motto indicates, 'Together we Aspire, Together we achieve', I want Trinidad and Tobago and Canada to work together towards the better good of both our nations.
Gérard Latulippe (LLL, Montréal University, 1966; D.S.A., Post-Graduate in Business Administration, Montréal University, 1979) was admitted to the Quebec Bar in 1967, and he practised administrative and labour law before entering provincial politics. From 1985 to 1989, he served as a member of the Québec National Assembly. He also served as solicitor general of Quebec. In 1989, he served in Mexico City as the Quebec general delegate in Mexico. Subsequently, from 1994 to 1997, Mr. Latulippe served in the same capacity in Brussels, where he was responsible for relations with the European Union and Benelux. In 1997, he returned to Quebec and was deputy minister of the Quebec Ministry of International Relations, where he developed the Francophone Business Forum. In 2003, Mr. Latulippe joined the Washington-based National Democratic Institute, where he served as Morocco country director and senior representative in the Maghreb region, and, subsequently, as resident director in Haiti until 2010. In March 2010, Mr. Latulippe was named president of the International Centre for Human Rights and Democratic Development (Rights & Democracy) in Montréal. He is married to Odette Dumontier.