TORONTO, Ont.–Great Lakes-Seaway business leaders marked the end of the shipping season at the Chamber of Marine Commerce’s annual Marine Club luncheon yesterday in Toronto. The luncheon, a signature event during a week of industry meetings, attracted a record crowd of more than 200 Canadian and U.S. shipping, industrial and agricultural executives along with federal, provincial and local government representatives.
“This is an opportunity for our industry to reflect on the successes of the past year, connect with our many stakeholders throughout the region, and hopefully have a little fun after many months of hard work,” said Stephen Brooks, President of the bi-national Chamber of Marine Commerce.
“The Chamber of Marine Commerce is now moving full speed ahead into 2016 advocating to ensure the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Seaway remains the conduit for North American industrial competitiveness.”
The luncheon featured well-known television commentator and author, Rex Murphy, who entertained the crowd with his take on the Canada-United States’ relationship.
Liberal MP Vance Badawey (Niagara Centre) spoke on the opportunities ahead for dialogue with the newly-elected Liberal Canadian government, saying:
“With $7 billion being spent by the shipping industry and governments on both sides of the border to improve infrastructure at the same time that Canadians are demanding more environmentally sustainable transportation methods, there is great opportunity for growth along the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Seaway.”
Greg Wight, former CEO of Algoma Central Corporation and the current fundraising campaign chair for the Welland Canal Fallen Workers Memorial, also briefed the audience on the new designs and plans for the monument, which will honour the 137 men that lost their lives during the construction of the canal.