Emma Hippolyte (L) and Jean Augustine
By Vicky Augustin
Caribbean News Now contributor
TORONTO, Canada — Emma Hippolyte, minister for commerce, business development, investment and consumer affairs, represented Saint Lucia at the 75th annual conference and trade show of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) held in Saskatchewan, Canada, from June 1 to 4, 2012.
FCM influences policy and programs that are vital to building strong, sustainable communities across Canada and shares its expertise around the world, building roads, housing, and policy, and ecology innovation to deliver services that provide the best possible quality of life to citizens.
Under the Caribbean Local Economic Development Program, (CARILED), the FCM, in partnership with the Caribbean Forum of Local Government Ministers (CFLGM), the Caribbean Association of Local Government Authorities (CALGA) and the Commonwealth Local Government Forum (CLGF), is implementing a six-year, $23.2 million project to stimulate sustainable local economic development (LED) in the Caribbean region.
Commencing 2012 to 2017, CARILED will support nearly 50 local governments and agencies in their local economic development initiatives, targeting more than 500 small and medium size enterprises (SMSE) throughout the Caribbean. CARILED is funded by the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA).
At the conference were more than 1,500 municipal leaders from across Canada. All major parties in the House of Commons were represented at the conference, with transportation, infrastructure and communities minister, Denis Lebel, Tom Mulcair, Bob Rae, and Elizabeth May.
During a stopover in Toronto, Hippolyte met with Jean Augustine, Fairness Commissioner of Canada and the first black woman to serve in Canada’s Parliament, members of the Saint Lucian community and Consul General Michael Willius.