Canadian Heritage

Canadian Heritage

December 18, 2006 15:39 ET

Canada's New Government Welcomes the Entering Into Force of UNESCO Convention on Protection and Promotion of Diversity of Cultural Expressions

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - Dec. 18, 2006) - The Honourable Beverley J. Oda, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Status of Women, responded enthusiastically to the ratification of the UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions by more than a dozen European States. The Convention will enter into force on March 18, 2007, three months after the deposit of the 30th instrument of ratification.

"This Convention is very important for our artists and creators, for all of us as Canadian citizens, as well as for everyone who is committed to cultural diversity," said Minister Oda. "It will enable us to ensure the free expression of our ideas, our history, and our experiences, while at the same time guaranteeing that these will be communicated to future generations."

The Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions recognizes both the social and the economic nature of cultural goods and services such as books, films, and television programs. The Convention reaffirms the right of States to take steps to support the diversity of their cultural expressions and is complementary to other international treaties, such as trade agreements.

"The involvement of our provincial and territorial partners, particularly the Government of Quebec, was crucial to Canada's work in this area, given that we played a leadership role in the development and the promotion of the Convention," said Minister Oda. "While we will dedicate ourselves to addressing issues related to the entering into force of the Convention, Canada's New Government will continue to encourage as many countries as possible to officially recognize the importance of cultural diversity by ratifying this important international treaty."

"I would also like to thank Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Minister of Canadian Heritage Beverley J. Oda for their unshakable determination to energetically pursue the campaign for the ratification of the Convention, as well as for their ongoing support for the work of the Canadian Coalition for Cultural Diversity," said Scott McIntyre, Co-Chair of the Canadian Coalition for Cultural Diversity.

On October 20, 2005, the Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions was adopted by the 33rd UNESCO General Conference. On November 25, 2005, Canada became the first country in the world to accept the Convention.

(This news release is available on the Internet at www.canadianheritage.gc.ca under News Room.)

Contact Information

  • Office of the Minister of Canadian Heritage
    and Status of Women
    Chisholm Pothier
    Director of Communications
    819-997-7788
    or
    Canadian Heritage
    Donald Boulanger
    A/Chief, Media Relations
    819-994-9101