Wynne’s Mexico mission ends with signing of Climate Action statement

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne and Finance Minister Charles Sousa are shown in Toronto on Tuesday June 11, 2013. Wynne and Sousa are expected to provide more details Tuesday about the province's new pension plan. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Aaron Vincent Elkaim

Premier Kathleen Wynne on Friday wrapped up her participation in the second annual Climate Summit of the Americas, where Ontario signed the 2016 Climate Action Statement along with subnational jurisdictions from across the Americas.

To conclude her successful mission to Mexico on Friday, September 2, the Premier is scheduled to meet with Grupo Bimbo in Mexico City. The world’s largest baked goods company, Grupo Bimbo acquired Canada Bread in 2014 and employs approximately 2,000 people across Ontario. The Premier will also meet with Scotiabank, which employs more than 12,000 people in Mexico, to examine ways to attract more international business to Ontario’s strong financial sector.

In Guadalajara, capital of Jalisco, Premier Wynne met with leaders in the agri-food sector to examine new trade opportunities. The Premier met with Felipe Gomez Fajardo, President of Grupo Vida, to promote Ontario’s strong agri-food sector, and also discussed Ontario’s competitive business climate and support for innovation with Luis Aranguren, Chief Executive Officer of Arancia Industrial.

Wynne said:  “Mexico is an important trade partner for Ontario — this mission promoting our leadership in key sectors opens the door for future business opportunities and increased investment in Ontario. But our economic growth cannot happen at the expense of the environment. That is why Ontario and Mexico also share a commitment to fight climate change in our own jurisdictions and alongside other governments.

Innovation sector

Throughout the climate summit, the Premier promoted Ontario’s support for the innovation sector, expertise in cleantech and leadership in taking action against climate change — including moving forward with the province’s cap and trade program.

  • Ontario is the best place in Canada to invest, according to Site Selection, a prestigious U.S. business magazine that presented the province with the Canadian Competitiveness Award this week.
  • After California, Texas and Ohio, Ontario has the most manufacturing employees of any jurisdiction in Canada and the U.S. In 2015, Ontario’s manufacturing businesses shipped more than $289 billion in product.
  • Mexico is Ontario’s fifth-largest source of agri-food exports, with a total of $130 million in agri-food sales in 2015.
  • Ontario’s action to eliminate coal-fired electricity is the single-largest climate change initiative in North America to date. Now, Ontario is implementing a cap and trade program, which it intends to link to California and Québec’s starting in 2018 as part of the largest carbon market in North America.
  • Ontario’s cap and trade program is estimated to generate $1.8–1.9 billion annually. Revenues will be invested in Ontario to support initiatives that will further reduce emissions and support the transition to a low-carbon economy.

While at the summit, the Premier participated in a Governors’ Plenary Session moderated by Her Excellency, Patricia Espinosa, the Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, with other subnational leaders, including the governors of Vermont and Jalisco. The Premier and the Minister of the Environment and Climate Change, Glen Murray, also participated in a roundtable discussion with other governors and ministers, hosted by Jalisco Governor Jorge Aristóteles Sandoval Díaz and Her Excellency, Patricia Espinosa.

Ontario achieved two key agreements during the summit. A new joint declaration between Ontario, Québec and Mexico sets the stage for more collaboration on climate change actions across the continent, especially the development of carbon markets. A new Memorandum of Understanding with Jalisco will increase cooperation between the two regions, particularly in climate change, energy, science and technology, higher education, tourism, health sciences and innovation.

Promoting international trade and fighting climate change are part of the government’s economic plan to build Ontario up and deliver on its number-one priority to grow the economy and create jobs. The four-part plan includes helping more people get and create the jobs of the future by expanding access to high-quality college and university education. The plan is making the largest infrastructure investment in hospitals, schools, roads, bridges and transit in Ontario’s history and is investing in a low-carbon economy driven by innovative, high-growth, export-oriented businesses. The plan is also helping working Ontarians achieve a more secure retirement.

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