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Saskatchewan Announces Locations For International Trade Offices

The province has finalized the locations for its international trade offices  in London, Dubai, Mexico City and Ho Chi Minh City. 

Agriculture Minister David Marit sees the offices as being important for the ag sector as far as growing Saskatchewan's exports and value-added markets.

"Obviously there's growth happening in those regions. We're seeing exports from the Province of Saskatchewan increase, and we're seeing the business community, also looking at these regions as an opportunity to grow their business. And we want to have what I would say, you know, is feet on the ground, to be able to assist this growth happening with our business community here."

He says the overall goal here is to grow the province's exports and economy.

Marit feels London was a very important location with the European trade and CETA agreement coming into effect.

"Also London is, you know, the financial capital of the world, one of the financial capitals of the world, which really obviously, will also help with investment attraction as well and opportunities there. But London is obviously a major thoroughfare for the whole European community as well."

He says as far as Dubai, we're seeing it becoming a big, big importer of Saskatchewan grains.

"In all sides of it, whether it's pulse, or canola, and wheat as well. So we're seeing this as a huge growth opportunity as a leading export country within that whole Mediterranean region. And obviously, you know, it has an impact on European countries, but also South American countries as well. And even into Pakistan, India, and even to some degree into China. So we see a great opportunity to grow. I was there, we can see that they that the companies there are building their facilities to accommodate this growth. And we felt it was important for us to have a presence there to help obviously, our business community grow business there, but also opportunity for investment attraction here in the province of Saskatchewan."

He notes Mexico has been a real, real boost to Saskatchewan exports.

"It's one of our largest exporting countries and Mexico City is the hub for the whole Latin American region. We see huge opportunity not only in the grain side there, but also in the livestock side as well. We're seeing huge interest from the livestock sector in Mexico in looking at what's happening here in our livestock sector, as far as breeding and things like that. So it's important for us to have that presence into that Latin American region and Mexico City. Obviously, it was it was a great place to start."

He says they see Hoshi Minh City in Vietnam as a very aggressive city with a lot of potential.

"We see opportunity in that whole region, when we see the growth of the youth in that area and their eating habits changing. We're seeing a significant increase in not only canola and canola meal, but also in the pulse side, we're seeing also a significant increase there as well. So we see a huge opportunity for growth there. And just to be able to have people on the ground to really bring forward Saskatchewan and what they have to offer, I think is important for us to have that presence there. But it will obviously give us a good foothold on a very significant region with a great population as well."

He notes while Ottawa has a number of International Trade Offices, it's also important for the Province to have a presence internationally.

"We want to be able to really narrow down and define what Saskatchewan has to offer in the way of manufacturing, obviously, mining as well, and agriculture is obviously a big part of that. So, we're just seeing this as an opportunity for us to tell our story, the Saskatchewan story and what Saskatchewan has to offer."

Saskatchewan's new trade offices in London, Dubai, Mexico City and Ho Chi Minh City will complement the first four offices in Japan, China, India and Singapore.

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