Foreign Affairs Minister Forced To Miss APMA

Turmoil in Washington has kept a high-profile speaker from being at this year's Automotive Parts Makers Conference in Windsor.

Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland was slated to address the event this evening.

APMA President Flavio Volpe says world events took precedence.

"We had her as the keynote speaker for dinner.  And then with last week's 2-3-2 surprise and with being in Washington for the OAS we heard yesterday she wasn't going to make it"

Windsor Essex Economic Development Corporation Chief Operating Officer Rakesh Naidu says the event is a major opportunity.

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APMA President Flavio Volpe at the 2018 Conference, St. Clair centre for the Arts, June 6, 2018. (Photo by AM800's Peter Langille)

"We bring important people, there are buyers here, the purchasing people, engineers, Chief Technical Officers.  A great opportunity to hear ideas but also to find opportunities to do business so this is a great networking opportunity"

Naidu says the conference is a good chance to do some scouting.

"From an economic development perspective it's a good opportunity for us to do some intelligence gathering.  In terms of who are the ones that are on the expansion, who are the ones we should be going after to bring attention to this region and bring them here"

Volpe says he is pleased the relocated event has come off so well, with no companies or delegates pulling out.

There are companies and delegates from around the world at the conference.