Justin Trudeau announced that $120 million will be allocated to 11 projects that support gender equality in Commonwealth countries.
Canada will bring the concerns of smaller Commonwealth nations to G7 leaders in Germany on Sunday, particularly the growing threat of famine, Foreign Affairs Minister Mélanie Joly said.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Ms. Joly have been in Rwanda's capital, Kigali, since Wednesday for the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, where discussions focused on the concerns of nations suffering from food shortages .
At a press conference on Saturday, Mr. Trudeau pointed the finger at Russia, blaming it for exacerbating the food crisis.
In several places in the world, we are in the process of to experience food insecurity. With the export routes blocked in Ukraine or the increase in the price of fertilizers caused by the war, Vladimir Putin is worsening the food crisis, denounced the Prime Minister.
Mr. Trudeau assured that Canada will help the countries most affected, in particular with the investment of 250 million additional dollars announced Thursday to support the main humanitarian organizations in food.
“We had the chance to explain this situation, to demonstrate that it is caused by Russia, and also that Canada is there to help.
—Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister
Mr. Trudeau said Canadian grain transportation companies are on hand to help get grain to countries in need.
The Prime Minister Justin Trudeau during his stay in Rwanda.
The Prime Minister also criticized Russia's disinformation and misinformation, including false information that the food crisis was caused by Western sanctions against Russia. I was very clear: there are no penalties on food, said Mr. Trudeau.
He explained that the crisis is due to direct attacks from Russia, including a few days ago, with missiles launched at grain warehouses and with their blockades of the port of Odessa and other ports. , which prevent millions of tonnes of corn and wheat from leaving Ukraine to countries in need in the Middle East and Africa.
According to Mélanie Joly, Russia was targeting Ukrainian ports and grain elevators, which prevents grain from reaching the countries that need it. What is clear to us is that Russia is wreaking havoc in many countries around the world and putting 50 million lives at risk, Minister Joly said Friday evening in Rwanda.
< p class="e-p">Minister Joly said that Canada is in listening mode within the Commonwealth, where the leaders of small countries can speak without the dominating presence of the United States, Russia and China.
Rwandan President Paul Kagame (left) greets Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau during the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting at the Kigali Convention Centre.
The Prime Minister announced on Saturday a new investment of $250 million to advance critical issues such as global health, gender equality and sexual and reproductive health.
Thirty million dollars will be invested in various projects to share information and promote solutions to counter the climate crisis. It will also be used for projects supporting peace and security on the African continent.
During Saturday's press conference, Mr. Trudeau also addressed the issue of the energy transition. He said he looked forward to continuing discussions over the next few days with Germany and other European partners not only on short-term energy needs but also on the transformation of more energy sources. cleanliness, which must be accelerated due to Russia's actions.
Much of the infrastructure that could be built for natural gas will also be used for hydrogen. All the investments we are making…must be used for this transition to reduce our dependence on fossil fuels over the next few years, Mr. Trudeau said.
He added that Sunday's G7 meeting will be used in particular to find possible solutions.
Mr. Trudeau also took advantage of his speech to denounce the situation around abortion in the United States. He said $120 million will be spent on 11 projects that support gender equality in Commonwealth countries.
This includes a foundation for sexual health and reproductive rights in Nigeria as well as research projects to improve the health system.
“At a time when women's rights are under attack in many places around the world, we must and will continue to invest in increasing access to safe sexual and reproductive health services for women across the world. whole world.
— Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister
In addition, $94 million will be allocated to funding education, including $80 million for the Canada Program International Development Scholarship Awards 2030.
Justin Trudeau recalled that he was going to convert the Canadian office in Rwanda into a high commission, which will increase the capacity of the diplomatic services. In addition, an agreement was signed regarding Canada-Rwanda air transport so that the two countries are better connected.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau attempted to meet with the President of the African Union Commission Moussa Faki Mahamat during the Commonwealth Summit, but the meeting was repeatedly postponed and eventually cancelled.
Justin Trudeau had his picture taken with summit participants.
Shortly after Mr. Trudeau's arrival in Rwanda, the federal government announced that Canada will appoint a new ambassador to the African Union, several of whose member countries are suffering from food shortages as a result of the war between Russia and Ukraine.
President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky and Russian President Vladimir Putin met with representatives of the African Union. Russia blames sanctions on its country for disruption of grain transportation.
For his part, Justin Trudeau is traveling to the Bavarian Alps, Germany, on Saturday evening for the G7 Summit, where the conflict with Ukraine will be a priority.< /p>
Canada's Foreign Minister said she spoke with her G7 counterparts on Friday and expects starvation and safe passage of Ukrainian refugees to be the main topics of discussion.
Prime Minister Trudeau also promised to give a central place, during his international meetings, to the concerns of young leaders who spoke during a dialogue activity on Saturday.
They spoke about the devastating effects of climate change, especially around remote island nations where infrastructure cannot withstand natural disasters and where reconstruction efforts take years.