Harper, Fillon discuss EU free-trade deal during hour-long meeting
2 July 2008
OTTAWA - Prime Minister Stephen Harper met with his French counterpart Francois Fillon in Ottawa on Wednesday, with Afghanistan and a potential free-trade agreement between Canada and the European Union among the topics of discussion.
Harper and Fillon also discussed the upcoming G8 Summit, October’s Francophonie Summit in Quebec City and the Canadian-European Union Summit to be held in Canada this fall.
Fillon and Harper met for less than an hour during which France and Canada finalized four agreements regarding scientific research.
It is during the fall meeting that the federal government hopes to begin negotiating a free-trade pact with the European Union. France has recently begun a six-month term as president of the EU council.
Fillon and Harper have met once before in Paris in June 2007, not long after President Nicolas Sarkozy and his team took power.
Fillon, who heads the French government, is in Canada for Quebec City’s 400th anniversary celebrations.