Resetting Canada’s relationship with Mexico during a two-day state visit by President Enrique Peña Nieto, Liberal Party Prime Minister Justin Trudeau lifted of a contentious visa requirement for Mexican travelers starting Dec.1.
“This move will make it easier for our Mexican friends to visit Canada, while growing our local economies and strengthening our communities,” Trudeau said.
The policy had been imposed by the previous Conservative government to stem the flow of asylum claims from Mexico, at a time when Mexicans accounted for more than 25 percent of all refugee claims.
Another long-standing irritant between the two countries was zapped: Mexico’s ban on beef products from Canada. That will end in October.
The ban on beef began in 2003 at the height of mad-cow disease fears.
“We share more than just a continent. We share values, goals and ambitions. Not only for our respective citizens, but for all members of our global community,” Trudeau said. “And we’re prepared to take action in ways that will make a real difference in people’s lives.”
The two leaders began the day with a morning run, crossing the provincial boundary from Ontario to Quebec across the Ottawa River on the Alexandra Bridge.
Pena Nieto’s two-day state visit ended Tuesday night with a dinner at Rideau Hall. The menu reflected Canada’s different regions, such as caribou loin from Rankin Inlet and Niagara prosciutto.
After today’s meeting with U.S. President Barack Obama, the Mexican president will travel to Chile for a meeting of the Pacific Alliance.