Mr. Speaker, we are a trading nation. Our prosperity depends on our ability to sell our goods to other countries. That is why our government is pursuing an ambitious trade agenda to expand trade, open doors for Canadian exporters, encourage economic growth and create jobs for Canadians.
This week, the Minister of International Trade is on a trade mission with Canadian business to Turkey. While in Turkey, the minister has opened a new office of Free Breeze, a Canadian wind energy company, as well as a promotional office for Centennial College to recruit students from Turkey to study in Canada. As a sign of Canada's continued efforts to engage Turkey in a productive commercial relationship, the minister also opened a new Canadian consulate in Istanbul.
Turkey represents an important market for Canada, with trade between our two countries at over $1.5 billion in 2009.
As chair of the Canada-Turkey parliamentary friendship group, I encourage all members of this place to support our Canadian businesses as they engage with Turkey. I applaud the minister's efforts in these days.