Renewal of the Cooperative Agreement between the Government of Québec and the Government of the State of Israel

Québec City, December 11, 2007 - Today, the Minister of International Relations and Minister Responsible for La Francophonie, Monique Gagnon-Tremblay, and the Consul General of the State of Israel, Yoram Elron, signed the Cooperative Agreement between the Government of Québec and the Government of the State of Israel. The agreement extends and expands the commitment to cooperation contained in the first agreement signed in Jerusalem in 1997. The science and technology, culture and education sectors have been the focus of productive exchanges for the past decade. The new agreement now adds health, economy, and trade to the list.

The five-year framework agreement reflects a joint desire to increase collaboration and exchanges between Québec's and Israel's departments and agencies.

Various events and activities have been supported in recent years through the Cooperative Agreement. Cultural highlights include the Dead Sea Scrolls exhibit at the Pointe-à-Callières Museum, the Montréal Sephardic Festival, and the Tel-Aviv, The White City exhibition in collaboration with UQAM's Centre for Design.

Three projects have been carried out in science and technology: a neuroscience conference held in Israel, participation of an Israeli delegation in the agri-foods symposium, and joint development of medical applications.

In the education sector, the McGill Middle East Program in Civil Society and Peace Building provides scholarships to Israeli, Palestinian, and Jordanian students at the master's level in social work at McGill in addition to internships at a community centre in their home countries during their second year of study. Students subsequently work with the community centre teams for a four-year period.

Minister Gagnon-Tremblay underscored the positive outcomes of the cooperative activities that have been undertaken since 1997. She is also extremely pleased by the interest that departments, agencies and businesses in Québec and Israel have expressed in continuing and heightening cooperation.

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Information: 418 649-2400 poste 57861

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