rabble blogs are the personal pages of some of Canada's most insightful progressive activists and commentators. All opinions belong to the writer; however, writers are expected to adhere to our guidelines. We welcome new bloggers -- contact us for details.

How is Canada redistributing its foreign embassies?

Please chip in to support more articles like this. Support rabble.ca today for as little as $1 per month!

I admit, I don't yet have a good sense of the potential significance of this. The Canadian government seems to be reorganizing its distribution of embassies throughout the world, possibly signaling a new foreign policy emphasis that has been underway since 2007.

On April 16, it was reported that Canada will close its embassy in Bosnia. Canada's ambassador to Bosnia-Herzegovina, David Hutchings, when interviewed by RFE/RL, said that "we can continue to be effective and provide programs, but reduce costs and consolidate our activities." RFE/RL states that Hutchings "cited the closure of other Canadian missions around the world while noting the opening of new ones in China, India, Brazil, and Mexico."

Also on April 16, the embassy in Cambodia is slated for closure in May. It's been operating there for 17 years. From the official statement, the Canadian government "has decided to change the nature of its diplomatic representation in Cambodia... Our intention is that a Canadian Ambassador in a nearby country will be accredited to Cambodia." Xinhua news reports that "new Canadian government offices will be opened, 'mainly to take advantage of emerging markets...' Three of these have already been opened, with two in India and one in Mongolia."

The Foreign Affairs and International Trade website lays out its policy under the title "A Global Commerce Strategy for Securing Canada's Growth and Prosperity."

Below is an excerpt from the document:

"The Government of Canada has pledged to improve Canada’s competitiveness and to support Canadian firms as they pursue opportunities in the global marketplace. Through its Global Commerce Strategy, the Government is taking action to:

- Boost Canadian commercial engagement in global value chains;

- Secure competitive terms of access to global markets and networks for Canadian businesses;

- Increase foreign direct investment in Canada and Canadian direct investment around the world; and

- Forge stronger linkages between Canada’s science and technology community and global innovation networks."

A related document by Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada states that since 2007 transformation has been taking place because, "we are aligning the department’s organizations and focusing on delivery of the government’s foreign and trade policy priorities: greater economic opportunity for Canada, with a focus on growing or emerging markets; the United States and the hemisphere; and Afghanistan, including in the context of neighbouring countries. We are also changing the way we operate in order to respond quickly and flexibly to new and emerging priorities as they arise."

Thank you for reading this story…

More people are reading rabble.ca than ever and unlike many news organizations, we have never put up a paywall – at rabble we’ve always believed in making our reporting and analysis free to all, while striving to make it sustainable as well. Media isn’t free to produce. rabble’s total budget is likely less than what big corporate media spend on photocopying (we kid you not!) and we do not have any major foundation, sponsor or angel investor. Our main supporters are people and organizations -- like you. This is why we need your help. You are what keep us sustainable.

rabble.ca has staked its existence on you. We live or die on community support -- your support! We get hundreds of thousands of visitors and we believe in them. We believe in you. We believe people will put in what they can for the greater good. We call that sustainable.

So what is the easy answer for us? Depend on a community of visitors who care passionately about media that amplifies the voices of people struggling for change and justice. It really is that simple. When the people who visit rabble care enough to contribute a bit then it works for everyone.

And so we’re asking you if you could make a donation, right now, to help us carry forward on our mission. Make a donation today.

Comments

We welcome your comments! rabble.ca embraces a pro-human rights, pro-feminist, anti-racist, queer-positive, anti-imperialist and pro-labour stance, and encourages discussions which develop progressive thought. Our full comment policy can be found here. Learn more about Disqus on rabble.ca and your privacy here. Please keep in mind:

Do

  • Tell the truth and avoid rumours.
  • Add context and background.
  • Report typos and logical fallacies.
  • Be respectful.
  • Respect copyright - link to articles.
  • Stay focused. Bring in-depth commentary to our discussion forum, babble.

Don't

  • Use oppressive/offensive language.
  • Libel or defame.
  • Bully or troll.
  • Post spam.
  • Engage trolls. Flag suspect activity instead.