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International Trade committee  Good afternoon. Thank you for this wonderful invitation. It is very much appreciated. First, I would like to point out that Mrs. Mandelbaum, who is with me, is the Director of Export Assistance for the Chambre de commerce de l'Est de Montréal. I am the President and CEO. I woul

February 26th, 2019Committee meeting

Christine Fréchette

International Trade committee  Okay, great. Naturally, the signing of free trade agreements has a positive effect on businesses' trade relations by providing an economic advantage and making trade with the signatory countries appealing.

February 26th, 2019Committee meeting

Christine Fréchette

International Trade committee  May we continue?

February 26th, 2019Committee meeting

Christine Fréchette

International Trade committee  Okay, that's good. I was saying that the signing of free trade agreements definitely has a positive effect on businesses in the signatory countries. These free trade agreements create a very clear financial interest for businesses. However, many barriers constrain SMEs' ability

February 26th, 2019Committee meeting

Christine Fréchette

International Trade committee  As you mentioned, it would be very interesting to have SMEs around the table before free trade agreements are signed. Engaging in dialogue with SMEs and the associations that work closely with them is certainly one way to determine which countries to engage in free trade agreemen

February 26th, 2019Committee meeting

Christine Fréchette

International Trade committee  That essentially sums up the situation.

February 26th, 2019Committee meeting

Christine Fréchette

International Trade committee  We could also encourage exporters to diversify their markets by providing incentives, for example.

February 26th, 2019Committee meeting

Christine Fréchette

International Trade committee  Okay. Thank you. In the current climate, it is important to encourage our SMEs to diversify their export markets. The government could provide incentives to foster diversification primarily in an effort to somewhat counter the usual response of turning to the North American mark

February 26th, 2019Committee meeting

Christine Fréchette

International Trade committee  Our chamber of commerce has tools to support businesses that want to start exporting their goods.

February 26th, 2019Committee meeting

Christine Fréchette

International Trade committee  We propose different approaches to businesses that are getting into exporting. It could be networking with a business already in place in the export country, or establishing a joint venture. We can also help them locate distributors for their products. We explore different approa

February 26th, 2019Committee meeting

Christine Fréchette

International Trade committee  We would be happy to do more if new tools become available.

February 26th, 2019Committee meeting

Christine Fréchette

International Trade committee  One barrier unique to SMEs is the lack of resources. Large businesses have all kinds of divisions and services, human resources, and the ability to hire consultants to fill any in-house gaps. However, as we heard a few minutes ago, the people who work for SMEs are often called

February 26th, 2019Committee meeting

Christine Fréchette

International Trade committee  We are hearing more and more about recruitment challenges. For the past year and a half, we have been hearing reports of how difficult it is to recruit skilled labour. As a result, many SMEs are slowing down. If a business does not have workers, a talent pool and, especially, i

February 26th, 2019Committee meeting

Christine Fréchette

International Trade committee  Can you repeat the question? We missed something.

February 26th, 2019Committee meeting

Christine Fréchette

International Trade committee  Thank you. On occasion, we have round tables or information sessions during which trade representatives come to the Chambre de commerce de l'Est de Montréal to talk about the opportunities and benefits of exporting to a given country. When foreign trade commissioners come to Mon

February 26th, 2019Committee meeting

Christine Fréchette