During a nationally televised meeting in Beijing, China, delegates from Equine Canada and the China Horse Industry Association (CHIA) signed a memorandum of understanding for the purposes of working together and ultimately opening the borders for trading horses and knowledge between the two countries.
“I am truly honoured to witness Canada and China forging this important relationship,” said Al Patterson, president of Equine Canada. “I think it is great we made this big step to move forward. This future partnership provides a valuable opportunity to both Canada and China through our breeders and educators.”
“The EC industry organization affiliates have joined forces with the federation to develop stronger partnerships to ensure a strengthened vision for international trade,” Patterson added.
The Canadian delegation that travelled to China included Darryl Kaplan from Standardbred Canada, Haidee Landry from the Canadian Quarter Horse Association (CQHA), Grant Watson from the Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society and industry liaison Hao Zhang.
Professor Jia Youling, president of the CHIA, was optimistic about the collaboration, stating, “As one of the leading countries in the world for horses, Canada has produced many of the best horses. I am confident we can build a long relationship, built on mutual benefits.”
Canadian Senator Victor Oh who was in Beijing for the historic meeting, spoke about the larger impacts of the signing.
“Today, we are signing this memorandum of understanding to grow the equine industries in both countries,” Senator Oh said. “I look forward to the role that equine will play in strengthening the trade relationship between Canada and China.”
In addition to Senator Oh, Canada was represented by senior officials from the Canadian Embassy in China. Canadian and Chinese delegates, and government officials, will continue to meet and collaborate on the next steps to move this new relationship forward in the coming months.
Landry, vice president of the CQHA and Equine Canada board member, summed up the importance of the significant day.
“I’m proud to be part of Equine Canada’s initiatives to move our industry forward by forging a new partnership with the China Horse Industry Association,” Landry said. “The Canadian Quarter Horse Association is pleased to be working with Equine Canada on this important trade mission.”