Québec was a stand out at the very first French Language Forum of the International Organization of the Francophonie (OIF), which was held in Québec City July 2 to 6. The Forum brought together 1,300 participants from civil society from 104 countries for a week of activities, testimonials and debates on the French language, its current situation and its future. Quebecers also answered the call of the Forum and OIF, coming out in great numbers to take part in the cultural activities happening around the city that were open to the public.
The Ministère des Relations internationales (MRI) is proud to launch its new website today. The site boasts a more up-to-date, colourful look, and we have improved it in a variety of ways to meet our Québec readers’ needs.
June 11-13, several hundred companies gathered at the Merchandise Mart in Chicago for NeoCon, North America’s largest design exposition and conference for commercial interiors. The Quebec Government Office in Chicago supported the presence of companies from Québec at NeoCon and they most certainly distinguished themselves while in Chicago.
With an impressive line of 24 artfully crafted beers, including La Fin du Monde, Maudite and Don de Dieu, Unibroue brewing company has established itself throughout the world as a maker of refined beer products over the course of the last two decades. Started by two businessmen in Québec with a passion for quality beer, André Dion and Serge Racine wanted Unibroue to be known not only for its superb taste, but also for the care and history behind each and every one of their products. Most of Unibroue’s beers are created using a method that leaves some yeast particles in the bottle, allowing the beers to obtain the rich and full flavor for which the products have come to be known for.
The Woodrow Wilson Center for International Scholars hosted a conference on Canada-U.S. regional cross-border public security collaboration in Washington, D.C., on June 14. Before a packed house at the Wilson Center, Mathieu Ferland (Sûreté du Québec), James Horton (New York State Office of Counter Terrorism) and Michael J. Manning (Vermont State Police) discussed the real impact of cross-border collaboration between Québec and its U.S. neighbours with respect to preventing criminal activity in northeastern North America.
Premier Jean Charest and Pierre Arcand, Minister of Sustainable Development, Environment and Parks, took part in the recent United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, “Rio+20.” The international event was an opportunity to highlight Québec’s sustainable development commitment and initiatives and determination to speed up the shift to a green economy.
Premier Jean Charest and Minister of Natural Resources and Wildlife and Minister responsible for the Plan Nord Clément Gignac announced the creation of a transition office for the Plan Nord. The office will be set up to take charge in the short term of the mandates and responsibilities that will eventually be handed over to the Société du Plan Nord.
Governor of Kyoto Prefecture Keiji Yamada has just completed his first official visit to Québec following an invitation by the Premier. During his visit, Conference of Montreal President and co-founder Gil Rémillard also invited him to address the Conference on June 12. The theme of Governor Yamada’s speech was “The management of model forests in Kyoto: sustainable development of the region.”
Paul Lavoie, founder and Chairman of TAXI, is considering a Chicago presence following the success of its New York office. Founded in Montréal around the disciplines of advertising, design and digital, TAXI has grown to seven offices in Canada, the U.S., and Europe and counts BMW/MINI, Capital One, Canadian Tire, TELUS Mobility, Kraft, and Pfizer among its clients.
Québec-based ALDO specializes in the creation of high-quality fashion footwear, leather goods and accessories. In 1978, the first free-standing ALDO store opened on Sainte-Catherine Street in downtown Montreal. ALDO Group is a privately-held company that operates over 1,600 retail stores in more than 65 countries.
The Minneapolis St. Paul International Film Festival, which kicked off on April 12 and runs through May 3, features four films from Québec: Bestiaire (directed by Denis Côté), Café de flore (directed by Jean-Marc Vallée), Nuit #1 (directed by Anne Émond) and Starbuck (directed by Ken Scott). Anne Émond, director of Nuit #1, attended the festival and participated in a Q & A following the sold out screening of her film on April 21.
The Québec Government Office in Chicago’s reach expands well beyond the borders of Illinois. In fact, the Office covers 12 states in the Midwest, and its staff frequently travels throughout the region to build and maintain relationships with businesses, universities and cultural institutions.
Ressources Québec is a new Investissement Québec (IQ) subsidiary designed for businesses interested in investing in the mining and hydrocarbon sectors. Ressources Québec will provide financial solutions and support for businesses that want to develop large-scale, formative projects that are profitable for Québec, from exploration to mining and resource processing.
Montréal-based Kim Cole received the top prize at the 2012 International Home & Housewares Show in the bath + personal care category for her product, Gleener®, The Ultimate Fuzz Remover. The product beat out more than 300 other entries to win the award.
Québec Delegate General in Brussels Christos Sirros, Associate Deputy Minister - Forêt Québec Richard Savard, and MDDEP representative Robert Noël de Tilly (Ministère du Développement durable, de l’Environnement et des Parcs) recently took part in a conference in Brussels organized by the European Intergroup on Climate Change, Biodiversity and Sustainable Development. They were invited to present the Québec model. Québec is viewed as a pioneer in sustainable development and forest management.
Montréal fashion was in the limelight at MontréaL CollectionS in Chicago this past March. Over 300 buyers, representatives and manufacturers from the world of fashion had gathered at the Merchandise Mart for Stylemax, a renowned ready-to-wear trade show devoted exclusively to women’s apparel and accessories.
The Alliance Française de Chicago, along with a number of French-speaking consulates and other partners, organized a dozen francophonie-related programs during the month of March as part of the annual “Festival de la francophonie”.