Premier Rachel Notley has made significant progress on Alberta-China relations during her first three days in China.
During the first-ever China-Alberta Energy and Climate Change Roundtable held in Beijing on April 20, Premier Notley met with approximately 20 representatives from both Chinese and Canadian government agencies, research institutes and enterprises. The discussion identified the kind of environmental technologies needed in China and the opportunities for Alberta companies.
The Premier also signed a Memorandum of Understanding on behalf of the Government of Alberta with China’s National Development Reform Commission (NDRC) and its Energy Research Institute (ERI). The NDRC leads the Chinese government’s economic development efforts, while its subsidiary, the ERI, is a national research organization conducting comprehensive studies on China’s energy issues.
The agreement outlines commitments for Alberta and China to collaborate on energy and environmental research and for industry cooperation. It also provides the province with the opportunity to work with the NDRC-ERI and creates a pathway to collaborate on:
- environmentally sustainable energy sector development
- the promotion of renewable energy and energy efficiency
- climate change research and policy development
- technology cooperation and innovation
“Tackling climate change in the most effective way possible will take cooperation, collaboration and action from many sectors and many jurisdictions. As global citizens, we share a responsibility to protect the environment, and Alberta is eager to share our experiences and challenges and discuss best practices. I am honoured to sign this agreement to demonstrate Alberta’s commitment to continued collaboration with China.”
In addition, following the round-table discussion, several Alberta organizations signed agreements or announced projects during a ceremony, including:
- the University of Alberta (U of A) with Tsinghua University to create a Joint Research Centre for Future Energy and Environment
- the U of A Faculty of Rehabilitation Medicine with the Guanghua International Education Association to develop training for health professionals that will help China enhance and expand rehabilitation capacity
- TEC Edmonton with Tsinghua University and their research innovation incubator in Edmonton, TusPark/TusStar, to launch a new joint incubator
- the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology and the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology with BYD Company Ltd. to establish a certified training course – to be delivered in Alberta – for servicing Heavy Duty Electric Vehicles
- Alberta Advanced Education and Guanghua International Education Association to research health and aging, with a focus on education and professional development;
- Travel Alberta and CTrip.com to develop a tourism strategy
- Travel Alberta and Hainan Airlines to increase cooperation between Alberta and Hainan airlines
- Alberta Innovates with Tubao to strengthen development in the province’s forestry industry
While in Beijing, the Premier also met with Canada’s ambassador to China, John McCallum, and approximately 200 key stakeholders at a luncheon organized by the Canada China Business Council. She also participated in a roundtable with Chinese media.
“Premier Notley’s visit to China advanced concrete Alberta interests as well as Canadian interests, more broadly. I am particularly delighted to see the range of commercial and partnership outcomes, including in high-priority sectors such as tourism, education, energy and environment, and advanced technologies. This is the kind of leadership we need on China at this key juncture.”
Premier Notley and Economic Development and Trade Minister Deron Bilous will visit Guangzhou, China and Tokyo, Japan before returning to Alberta on April 27.