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B.C. premier embarks on trade mission in Japan, Korea, Singapore and Vietnam

B.C. Premier David Eby speaks during a news conference in Vancouver on Feb. 5, 2023. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

VICTORIA — British Columbia Premier David Eby is heading to Asia on a trade mission that makes stops in Japan, Korea, Singapore and Vietnam.

But the premier's tour itinerary, released Thursday, does not include China.

Eby said the overseas mission will bolster B.C.'s trade and investment ties in the Indo-Pacific region, the world's fastest-growing economic zone.

B.C. cabinet ministers Josie Osborne and Brenda Bailey, and Jagrup Brar, the New Democrat government's minister of state for trade, will accompany Eby on the trip.

A government statement said the premier and his ministers will meet with government and economic leaders in the Asian countries on issues of trade and investment, and discuss partnership opportunities ranging from clean technology to critical minerals and communications technology.

The mission is about building and exploring new relations and market opportunities, Eby told reporters Thursday.

"We're looking to diversify our trade relationships and to deepen our relationships with countries like Japan and Korea, and strengthen and build new relationships with countries like Singapore," he said.

"By having a diverse number of trading partners, I think, that will be more economically stable for British Columbians at a time of geopolitical tensions. The more trading partners we have, the deeper our relationships, the more successful our province will be."

Eby and his ministers return June 7.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 25, 2023.

The Canadian Press

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