On February 12, 2007, the Honourable Beverley J. Oda, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Status of Women, and the Honourable Line Beauchamp, Quebec’s Minister of Culture and Communications, hosted the fourth Canada/Quebec/Civil Society Roundtable on the Diversity of Cultural Expressions, along with representatives of the Canadian Coalition for Cultural Diversity. Held in Ottawa, the meeting presented an opportunity to review upcoming steps to ensure implementation of the Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions. The press release for the occasion states that ministers Oda and Beauchamp and Coalition members also agreed to work together to ensure the success of the first steps of implementing the Convention. They stressed the importance of the First Conference of Parties, to be held in spring 2007. In addition, the press release states, they expressed their wish to see this meeting promptly confer on the Intergovernmental Committee its mandate so that it may begin the tasks related to implementing the Convention without further delay.
Elsewhere, a Canadian Press article on Friday, February 9, 2007, claims that Canada intends to become a member of the first Intergovernmental Committee when its membership is determined during the First Conference of Parties to the Convention. According to the article, Minister Oda has even indicated her intention to work towards ensuring that the first meeting of the intergovernmental committee be held in Canada. The event could take place as early as next fall.
Referring to the Convention, the Canadian Press article states that “this treaty allows states to subsidize and protect their culture in spite of international trade regulations. The convention—which has always been opposed by the United States—allows quotas on local radio and television content to be imposed.”