Corporate Member Focus: The Canadian Embassy of Ireland

“The best advice I would have for any Irish companies looking to build relationships with Canadian counterparts would be to speak with our office first,” says Gerry Mongey Trade Commissioner at the Canadian Embassy in Dublin.

Gerry works on behalf of Canadian companies across a variety of sectors, but always in line with local strengths. Her mandate is to best understand the local market and see where opportunities lie between Ireland and Canada.

“If an Irish company is looking to import a product or service from Canada, has been contacted by a Canadian company and wishes to learn more about that company, is interested in a joint venture or partnership or looking at investing in Canada, I can be the first point of contact and will be pleased to assist and guide as appropriate,” Gerry explains.

There are 60 Canadian companies operating in Ireland, mostly in the fields of Financial Services and Information Communication Technology. However, there are also a number of Irish representatives for Canadian products such as lumber, wood flooring, ICF, post and beam homes, insulation and environmental remediation alongside various consultancy services.

“The most progressive business links between Canada and Ireland lie within the Financial Services, Technology and Pharma/Medical Tech sectors,” Gerry says. “The relationship in the construction sector is just now rebuilding itself following the economic downturn in Ireland.”

Canada and Ireland share a number of areas of common interest including timber-frame construction, off-site construction, green building technologies, BIM, water/wastewater and hospital projects.

“All of these sectors will be enhanced with the expected entry into force in 2017 of the Canada-EU Free Trade Agreement called CETA,” Gerry explains.

According to the terms of CETA, the Tariffs on 98% of goods categories will be set at zero, which will provide Irish exporters with enhanced opportunities to bid on public procurement tenders for goods and services in Canada.

“There have always been cultural and business ties between Canada and Ireland,” Gerry says. “Out of 36 million people in Canada, 4½ million claim Irish ancestry. Over the past numbers of years, men and women between the ages of 18 and 35 years have travelled to Canada to work under the International Experience Canada (IEC) program, many in the building trades, which has only increased connections between the two countries.”

“Business ties are strong,” Gerry adds. “We see this in the growing value of two-way trade and investment, a strong Ireland Canada Business Association here in Dublin, Ireland-Canada Chambers of Commerce in major cities across Canada and of course, the established Enterprise Ireland office in Toronto.”

On occasion, the Trade Commissioner travels to construction, green building and clean technology conferences and exhibitions in Canada, USA and third country destinations. Delegates from Ireland are an integral part of these events and are always welcomed.

“Delegates from Ireland can be assured of the highest level of exposure to all the participating Canadian exhibitors at these events, including the offer of participation in organised Business-2-Business programs, along with relevant networking events, all of which provide opportunities for doing business,” Gerry says. “Over many years, officials from relevant Irish Government departments, CIF, SEAI, Irish Green Building Council, various county council personnel and a plethora of well-known Irish construction and building products companies have participated in trade missions to Canada and elsewhere to meet Canadian companies.”

One such event – the Canada Green Building Council Conference and Net Zero Carbon Summit is taking place in Vancouver, British Columbia end May 2017.

If you are interested in knowing more about the Canada Green Building Council Conference and Net Zero Carbon Summit get in touch with Gerry Mongey at the Canadian Embassy.
Tel.: (+ 353 1) 234 4000

Canada prides itself on building green and has adopted the USA LEED building standard. Out of 600 LEED projects worldwide during 2016, 40% have been constructed in Canada. Here is one such LEED Gold certificate project:

Brock Commons – student residence for the University of British Columbia

Canada has just completed Brock Commons – the world’s tallest wood building at 18 stories (53 metres), making it the first mass wood, steel and concrete hybrid project ever constructed. The building has a concrete podium and two concrete cores, with 17 storeys of cross-laminated-timber floors supported on glue-laminated wood columns. The cladding for the façade is made with 70 per cent wood fibre.

Vancouver Architects Acton Ostry designed the building in collaboration with structural engineer Fast + Epp, tall wood advisor Architekten Hermann Kaufmann of Austria, and Structurlam in Penticton, British Columbia, which provided the prefabricated wood components.

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