MAG News

More than 20 members of an Arizona delegation traveled to Canada for a three-day trade mission to strengthen and expand Arizona’s economic and tourism ties with Calgary.

Arizona Delegation Seeks to Improve Trade With Canada

Buckeye Mayor Jackie Meck and Tanya Fir, Alberta Minister of Economic DevelopmentMore than 20 members of an Arizona delegation traveled to Canada for a three-day trade mission to strengthen and expand Arizona’s economic and tourism ties with Calgary.  

Calgary is located in the province of Alberta. The group was welcomed during the May visit by Tanya Fir, Alberta Minister of Economic Development, Trade and Tourism, who made a special trip from Edmonton to meet the delegation. Fir is a strong advocate for Alberta and its industry. The Arizona group also attended a reception at the residence of Lucia Piazza, U.S. Consul General to Alberta, Saskatchewan and the Northwest Territories. 

MAG organized the trip to connect the Arizona team with Calgary companies interested in expanding operations in Arizona. The delegation wanted to better understand what key factors Canadian companies are seeking in our communities.

“Our goal was to establish bilateral connections with Calgary elected officials and the business community to promote trade, foreign direct investment and economic development opportunities,” said MAG Economic Development Committee Chair Jackie Meck, mayor of Buckeye. 

Trade between Arizona and Canada is valued at $3.6 billion, with Arizona exporting $2.1 billion. Arizona has 280 Canadian-owned businesses, creating nearly 26,500 jobs, meaning Canadian-owned businesses employ more people in Arizona than those of any other foreign country.

Honorary Consulate of Canada and CEO of the Canada Arizona Business Council Glenn Williamson was part of the delegation. He said those numbers only begin to tap into the potential for future opportunities. He noted that many who come to visit, fall in love with Arizona and end up buying homes. 

“Tourism equals houses, which equals trade, which equals foreign direct investment,” said Williamson. “If tourism can be increased into the Valley and Arizona, there is a significant chance of increasing all the others.”

Viking Air Tour GroupThe group also heard more about Canada’s perspective on the current United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement negotiations. The dialogue was expected to help lay the groundwork for a future signing ceremony of the Arizona Uniform-Country Money Judgments Recognition Act. 

The delegation delivered a letter from Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich, who stated that it has been a “long journey from idea to execution” of the Act, but added “the hard work and persistence of all those involved” is finally paying off. “Providing a mechanism to have foreign, civil money judgments recognized in Arizona and Alberta will benefit residents of both jurisdictions, and will ensure valid and just enforcement of those judgments.” 

Published July 29, 2019

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The Maricopa Association of Governments (MAG) is a Council of Governments (COG) that serves as the regional planning agency for the metropolitan Phoenix area.

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