OTTAWA — President Joe Biden is heading to Ottawa on March 23 and will address Parliament during his two-day stay.
The White House confirmed the dates of the president’s much-anticipated visit to the Canadian capital, Biden’s first in-person trip north as president.
Russia’s war in Ukraine will cast a long shadow over the bilat with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, focusing discussions on defense, decarbonization and supply chains.
Haiti, clean energy, supply chains, climate change and “modernizing the North American Aerospace Defense Command” will be priority topics of discussion between the two leaders, according to a White House release. Trudeau’s office issued its own statement, adding that critical minerals will be a top agenda item, which wasn’t specifically highlighted in the White House release.
The spectre of Beijing’s alleged interference in Canada’s elections will also loom over the talks. It will also be the leaders’ first in-person meeting since high-altitude objects, and one confirmed balloon from China, were shot down over North America.
The dramatic takedowns alarmed politicians and military on both sides of the border, stoking discussions on continental defense, setting it up as a discussion point for bilateral talks.
Biden last visited Ottawa as vice president in December 2016 in the twilight of the Obama administration.
During an A-list dinner thrown in his honor, Biden touted North America as a region “better positioned than any time since the end of World War II” to lead the hemisphere and world in promoting liberal values.
“Viva la Canada because we need you very, very badly,” he said in a toast.
Beyond friendly photo-ops, the two G-7 leaders are expected to clarify joint action on the development of critical minerals.
Pressure will be on the leaders to announce progress on the Joint Action Plan on Critical Minerals that was finalized in 2020 during the final days of the Trump administration.
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