Governor Scott Announces Selection of Canadian Trade and Business Representative As Border Reopens
Montpelier, Vt. – Governor Phil Scott today announced the selection of Montréal -based economic development firm, CIDEP, as the new Vermont Trade and Investment Representative and Liaison in Canada. CIDEP’s main priority will be to initiate contact with Canadian businesses looking to expand into the U.S. market and then generate quality leads that have high potential to turn into Vermont investment projects. CIDEP will also represent Vermont at key trade events in Canada touting Vermont as a business and tourist destination.
“Our connection with Canada runs deep, and as the land border reopens, communities and families are reconnecting, Canadian travelers are returning, and businesses can once again focus on expanding operations and increasing trade with Vermont,” said Governor Phil Scott. “We hope this reconnection will remind Canadian companies what Vermont has to offer when thinking about expanding or doing business here, while also creating interest in Vermont products north of the border.”
"The relationship between Québec and Vermont is more than business. For more than 100 years, we have shared the same values,” said Michel Belval, President of the American Chamber of Commerce in Québec. “We support environmental projects, family's businesses, and small and medium enterprises. The opening of the new Vermont Office in Québec is a sign that our relationship can only continue to grow and that our partnership is better than ever."
In 2020, Vermont exported over $918 million in goods to Canada and imported $1.7 billion in goods, 76% of which were used in the production of American-made products. There are also 66 Canadian-owned businesses employing over 2,900 workers in Vermont.
CIDEP was selected through a competitive bid process administered by the Vermont Department of Economic Development. In addition to business recruitment, CIDEP will promote the state as an investment destination and encourage greater bi-lateral trade with its top market.
The funding for this two-year initiative was proposed in Governor Scott’s budget address calling for investments in Vermont’s economy, workforce, and communities. The funding was approved and included in Act 74 by the Vermont Legislature in June 2021.
“It is an honor to represent the State of Vermont in Québec for business trade and investments,” said Frederick Bernard, CEO of CIDEP. “With the full reopening of the land border, we can expect economic exchange to increase significantly. I am firmly convinced that Vermont has everything it takes to attract more Canadian companies in the years to come and we are dedicated to allocating all the necessary resources to promote the State of Vermont as a great location for Canadian corporations to do business.”
“Congratulations to Montréal-based company CIDEP for being selected by the State of Vermont to deepen the economic ties between Québec and Vermont,” said Québec Provincial Government Delegate to New England, Marie-Claude Francoeur. “The Scott Administration and the Québec Government firmly believe in free trade and in the complementarity of the Canadian and American economies. In these uncertain times, North America's economic recovery will depend on trade initiatives that support innovation, enhance our competitiveness, protect our integrated value chains, promote our common prosperity and benefit both our regions as well as our respective workers and their families. This is a win-win.”