Canada to seek membership to Indo-Pacific Economic Framework

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken visits Ottawa

OTTAWA/WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Canada will seek membership to the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework to further economic cooperation in the region, Foreign Minister Melanie Joly said on Thursday following a meeting with U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken in Ottawa.

Joly said at a news conference that Canada and the United States also agreed to hold the first Canada-U.S. Strategic Dialogue on the Indo-Pacific to further align approaches to the region.

"The United States and Canada are indeed Pacific nations," Joly said.

"We both believe in deepening our diplomatic and economic ties as well as strengthening the resiliency of our global supply chain."

U.S. President Joe Biden, who launched the IPEF in May on a trip to Tokyo, wants to use it as a way to raise environmental, labor and other standards across Asia.

In addition to the United States, the IPEF members are Australia, Brunei, Fiji, India, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

The countries in September agreed on parameters for negotiating closer trade, environmental and economic ties that U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo said would boost investment and jobs in the partner countries.

(Reporting by Daphne Psaledakis, Ismail Shakil, Simon Lewis and David Brunnstrom; Editing by Chris Reese and Jonathan Oatis)