Indiana Secretary of Commerce Victor Smith, Ports of Indiana CEO Rich Cooper and a group of Indiana leaders are visiting Québec to learn more about how the province is implementing its $9 billion maritime strategy.
Québec's Maritime Strategy was launched in 2015 and includes plans to invest $9 billion into its ports and maritime-related infrastructure over 15 years and create 30,000 jobs in the province by 2030. The Indiana Maritime Trade Mission to Québec includes meetings with Dominique Anglade, Minister of Economy, Science and Innovation, as well as leadership from the Port of Montreal, Port of Trois-Rivieres, Fednav and various maritime businesses in Quebec. The trip is part of a continued partnership established by Indiana and Québec in 2015 to explore opportunities for expanding maritime trade.
"Indiana and Québec are both logistics leaders that offer companies a strong competitive advantage when it comes to serving North American and global markets," said Victor Smith. "Indiana conducts $20 billion in trade with Canada, but only a small portion of that moves by water. More than half of Indiana's border is water, which presents enormous economic opportunities for our state. As Indiana experiences record employment, we look forward to working with Québec to expand our trade and grow our economies together."
In Trois-Rivieres, the Indiana delegation is meeting with Québec Associate Secretary General of Maritime Affairs Georges Farrah who is leading the implementation of the Maritime Strategy, Gaétan Boivin, President/CEO for the Port of Trois-Rivieres, as well as port officials, transportation providers and major manufacturers in the area. In Montreal, the group is meeting with Minister Anglade and economic officials as well as Fednav executives, Montreal Port Authority CEO Sylvie Vachon and various maritime business leaders during a special reception at the Port of Montreal.
"We greatly admire Québec's maritime strategy and this region's commitment to investing in the infrastructure to support future economic growth," said Rich Cooper. "For maritime shippers, Québec is a gateway to North America and Indiana is a gateway to the U.S.
Midwest. This amount of investment and support for the maritime industry validates a strong commitment to its future development and for the growth of all shipping throughout the Great Lakes/St. Lawrence system."
The Indiana delegation includes port, steel and economic development representatives from Ports of Indiana, Indiana Economic Development Corporation, ArcelorMittal, Northwest Indiana Regional Development Authority and Northwest Indiana Forum.
Indiana and Québec currently serve as co-chairs for the Conference of Great Lakes/St. Lawrence Governors and Premiers Regional Maritime Entity, which recently released a regional maritime strategy designed to double maritime trade on the Great Lakes/St. Lawrence Seaway while reducing the environmental impacts of freight transportation throughout the region. Indiana and Québec combine to generate 40 percent of the economic impact related to maritime shipping on the Great Lakes/St. Lawrence Seaway.