Canadian Prime Minister to visit India

Last Updated: Thu, Nov 01, 2012 11:01 hrs

New Delhi, Nov 1 (IBNS) Prime Minister of Canada, Stephen Harper, will pay a State Visit to India from November 4-9, said the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) on Thursday.

The visiting dignitary will be accompanied by his wife Laureen Harper.

During this visit, apart from official engagements in New Delhi, Harper and Laureen Harper will also visit Agra, Chandigarh and Bengaluru.

He will bring with him a high level Ministerial, official and business delegation from Canada, including three Ministers - Edward Fast, Minister of International Trade and Minister of Asia-Pacific Gateway; Tim Uppal, Minister of State (Democratic Reform) and Bal Gosal, Minister of State for Sport.

He is expected to be accompanied by a number of Members of Parliament, Senators, senior officials and business persons, including six members of the India-Canada CEOs Forum.

During his official engagements in New Delhi on November 6, Harper will call upon President of India Pranab Mukherjee and Vice-President Hamid Ansari.

Prime Minister of India Manmohan Singh will receive Harper at Hyderabad House that evening, after which the PM will host a banquet dinner in honour of Harper and Laureen Harper.

The visiting dignitary will also meet UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi. The Leader of the Opposition Sushma Swaraj and Minister of State for External Affairs, Preneet Kaur, will separately call on Harper.

India-Canada bilateral trade in the year 2011 was USD 5.2 billion, registering a growth of over 28% over 2010.

Total Canadian investment in India is estimated to be US$ 4.3 billion, while India's total investment in Canada is estimated to be US$ 14.2 billion. In the year 2010, Indian investment in Canada was around US$ 6.4 billion and Canadian investment in India around US$ 485 million.

Energy, Mining, Infrastructure, Higher Education, Science and Technology and Agriculture are priority areas of bilateral cooperation.

Canadians of Indian origin are a significant segment of the population of Canada, with a population estimated at over 1 million, which over 3% of the total population.

This is the second visit of Prime Minister Harper to India; he last visited India in November 2009.

The visit provides both sides an opportunity to identify ways to further deepen the bilateral relationship.

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