RICHMOND – Governor Terry McAuliffe will join Maryland Governor Larry Hogan and District of Columbia Mayor Muriel Bowser for a two-day joint tourism marketing mission to Canada from September 25 – 26. The Governor will be accompanied by Secretary of Commerce and Trade Todd Haymore, Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry Basil Gooden and representatives from the Virginia Economic Development Partnership, the Virginia Tourism Corporation, the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, and the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority. The delegation will visit Toronto, Canada.
The Capital Region delegation will participate in several meetings over the course of the mission seeking to further tourism and travel connections between Canada and the National Capital Region. The Governors and Mayor will meet with senior government officials, including Premier of Ontario Kathleen Wynne and U.S. Consul General Juan Alsace to promote Maryland, Virginia, and Washington D.C.’s desirable tourism assets, as well as the region’s thriving craft beverage and seafood industries.
“Missions like these are a crucial component of our efforts to market our region's world-class tourist attractions, products, and services,” said Governor McAuliffe. “More than 902,000 Canadians visited the Capital Region in 2015, spending over $384 million – a 21 percent increase from 2013 visitor spending from the country. I am looking forward to this opportunity to work with our regional partners to grow those numbers and bring more jobs and opportunity back to the National Capital Region."
“Canada is not only the largest trading partner for the Capital Region, but we also share a commitment to entrepreneurship, innovation, and high-growth industries like cybersecurity, life sciences, and aerospace, and defense,” said Maryland Governor Larry Hogan. “We are confident this mission will strengthen our regional partnerships and encourage even more trade and investment, as well as spur new opportunities for Canadians to tour the Capital Region.”
“Through this mission, we will be able to work together as a region to promote tourism between the DC region and Canada, expand inclusive innovation, and grow our global investment market,” said District of Columbia Mayor Muriel Bowser Bowser. “I am honored to represent the nation’s capital where we have a thriving tourism industry and one of the strongest local economies in the United States. As a region, we look forward to ushering in a new era of bilateral cooperation between the United States and Canada.”
In addition to travel business meetings and media interviews, Governor McAuliffe, Governor Hogan, and Mayor Bowser will attend a reception hosted by U.S. Consul General Juan Alsace, showcasing the region’s agriculture, food and beverage assets, and great quality of life to prospective travelers. This mission marks Governor McAuliffe’s 31st marketing mission.
The National Capital Region and Canada have a strong and robust partnership. Canada ranks first among U.S. export destinations. In addition, Canada exports more to Virginia, Maryland, and Washington, D.C. combined, than it does to Germany, France or any European Union country, besides the United Kingdom. Additionally, in 2015, 902,500 Canadians visited Virginia, Maryland, and Washington, D.C. and spent $384 million according to data from Stats Canada and Tourism Economics.