Thu. Apr 18th, 2024

Canada sells seven air tankers to  Greece

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Prime Minister Justin Trudeau during a meeting with his Greek counterpart Kyriakos Mitsotakis in Montreal, Sunday March 24, 2024.

The Canadian Press

Canada has formalized the sale of seven air tankers to Greece to fight forest fires on Sunday morning when Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis met in Montreal.

Mr. Trudeau noted that it has been 41 years since a Greek prime minister came to Canada. It took the friendship between my father and Prime Minister Papandreou to do it four decades ago, he said.

Now it is our friendship that brings this visit. The friendship is very deep between Canada and Greece. We are working on major updates, he continued.

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An air tanker sprays a forest fire. (File photo)

Canada has some 270,000 citizens of Greek origin, and Montreal's Greek community celebrates Greek Independence Day on Sunday.

Mr. Mitsotakis said it was an honor to visit Canada and spend this important day with [his] friend, Mr. Trudeau, as well as with the Greek diaspora and the Canadian community to celebrate [the] day of the independence of Greece.

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After their meeting, the two leaders participated in a signing ceremony to formalize the ;agreement to sell seven DHC-515 aircraft, commonly known as Canadair.

The value of the contract for the sale of the air tankers has not yet been disclosed.

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A DHC-515 air tanker

< p class="StyledBodyHtmlParagraph-sc-48221190-4 hnvfyV">Kim Douglas, vice-president of business development and marketing for the Canadian Commercial Corporation (CCC), signed the document on behalf of Canada. The signatory for Greece was Nikos Papathanasis, Deputy Minister of Economy and Finance.

Canadian aircraft manufacturer Havilland Canada's seven new air tankers represent a new generation of aircraft dedicated to emergency response and the protection of the environment, natural resources and communities, Durant said. the ceremony Sébastien Carrière, head of the Office of Protocol of Canada.

He added that these planes represent an investment in public safety and in the conservation of the environment. They also promote economic growth and job creation in Canada's aeronautical sector.

Greece is one of the countries of the ;European Union which have been particularly affected by the forest fires. Last year, the European Commission said a fire raging in Greece was the largest fire ever recorded in the European Union. The 2023 toll was hundreds of thousands of hectares burned in Greece.

A joint statement from Prime Ministers Trudeau and Mitsotakis on the air tanker contract is expected tomorrow. Mr. Mitsotakis will be in Toronto on Monday.

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