CEMA’s March 5th Speaker Series meeting featuring Forte Gerardo heard the story of the harmonious growth of relationships between Canadians and newcomers from the Philippines who are now Canadas fourth largest immigrant group.
Gerardo, a member of the advisory board of The International Import & Export Institute is the author of a recently published book titled in Tagalog Ka-intindi han which translates into English as Mutual Understanding. The text of the book is, however in English.
Gerardo , a UNESCO scholarship recipient, is backed by a full generation of international trade experience. Hes been Philippine trade representative in Denmark, Sweden and Norway and was the first trade commissioner and manager of Philippine House in Toronto. He heads an Aurora-based guidance counsel service to doing business with Asian countries.
Using a number of compelling historical facts on how, since the 1950s, sound relationships have developed between Canadians and both transplanted Filipinos and those who reside in that island nation, Gerardo believed that these defined a role model for relationships between diverse communities.
He said the mainstays of this relationship have been a mutual understanding of each others core values and economic s success. For instance, in 1996 there were 157,872 working Canadians of Filipino origin and ten years later, 300,000 of the estimated 400,000 now residing in Canada. In 1970, imports to Canada from the Philippines amounted to $4 million but in 1996 with a population growing from 30,000 to 400,000 these imports amounted to $990 million. A corresponding rise in Canadian exports to the Philippines to nearly $590 million has also resulted.
Please Note: Our next Speaker Series meeting will be held Thursday, April 2nd. Speaker: to be announced.