Trudeau to shuffle cabinet before hosting ministerial retreat

Parliament Hill

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will conduct a small shuffle of his ministers today before holing up later in the day for a cabinet retreat to plot strategy for the resumption of Parliament.
    
The shuffle is due to the departure of Navdeep Bains, who is not intending to run again in the next election, which could come as early as this spring.
    
Foreign Affairs Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne is expected to replace Bains while Transport Minister Marc Garneau moves into Champagne's old job.
    
Toronto-area backbencher Omar Alghabra is expected to take over the Tranpsort portfolio.
    
Trudeau has been clear that he wants departments crucial to the country's economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic to be overseen by ministers who will be around to help sell the government's agenda during the next election campaign.
    
The cabinet retreat, four one-day sessions to take place over the next two weeks _ is to focus on what more the government needs to do to manage the pandemic, which continues to rage across the country, including ways to accelerate the rollout of vaccines.