Department of National Defence

Department of National Defence

June 03, 2013 08:00 ET

Minister MacKay in China Meets His Counterpart, General Chang Wanquan

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - June 3, 2013) - In Beijing, The Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence met today for the first time with his Chinese counterpart, General Chang Wanquan, to discuss their views on the challenges of regional and global security, as well as Canada-China defence relations.

"It is an honour for me to be the first Canadian Minister of Defence to visit China in the last 10 years and the first Western Defence leader to meet with the new Chinese Minister of National Defence, General Chang Wanquan," said Minister MacKay. "This visit helped set the stage for an enhanced military-to-military relationship between the Canadian Armed Forces and the People's Liberation Army (PLA). Our security ties are an important component of building understanding with China in a range of areas".

During his meeting, Minister MacKay emphasized Canada's relationship with China, and our desire to develop further contacts between our countries. Minister MacKay also discussed the importance of our engagement across the Asia-Pacific Region to Canadian security and prosperity, which are increasingly tied to the vitality of Asia's economy and the region's stability.

Minister MacKay noted that the Canadian Armed Forces will take part in a common Asia-Pacific exercise with their Chinese counterparts, since China has accepted an invitation to the world's largest international maritime exercise, the Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC), in 2014. This will mark the first participation of China in the exercise, designed to prepare military forces to work together in missions ranging from providing humanitarian aide to full combat operations.

Canada remains committed to deepen our defence relations with China and engage in dialogue on issues of regional and international security.

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