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January 4, 2007

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Skelton Speaks at InterVac Funding Announcement

Happy New Year everyone and a special welcome to Minister Tony Clement and Parliamentary Secretary David Anderson.

 

It is my pleasure to welcome you to Saskatoon and to wish everyone a happy and healthy New Year.  This is the time when we look to the year ahead and to our future.  And today’s investment of up to twenty-five million dollars in InterVac is about a healthier, more prosperous future for Saskatchewan and for Canada. 

 

InterVac will protect the health of Canadian families. 

 

InterVac will keep our livestock, wildlife and pets healthy.  

 

InterVac will advance medical and veterinary progress around the world as researchers strive to find new breakthroughs.

 

And InterVac will further strengthen Saskatoon’s growing international reputation for world-class research.

 

This international vaccine research facility is the first of its kind in North America.  This project represents the increasing importance of teamwork, as we work together to face new health challenges.  Today’s investment ensures that Saskatchewan will be a leader in global research for many years to come. 

 

That international perspective is important because borders simply cannot contain infectious diseases.  Whether we look next door or around the world, we find neighbours facing shared challenges.  Research today is global … and it is competitive.

 

InterVac will propel Canada to the forefront in the race for new treatments.  InterVac’s success ensures that Saskatchewan will have a prominent position in Canada’s growing knowledge-based economy.  That economy is creating exciting new opportunities for Canadians, right across the country.

 

Today’s investment of up to twenty-five million dollars ensures that Saskatoon will be a world leader in vaccine development.  Saskatchewan will benefit through exciting new high-tech job opportunities.  These opportunities will give our best and brightest a new reason to build lives and careers in Saskatchewan.  And, their work will help to keep our people and animals healthy.  This builds on both the research strength at the University of Saskatchewan and Saskatchewan’s well-known excellence in agriculture.  Nowhere is the need for new and better vaccines understood more than right here in Saskatchewan. 

 

We have seen the challenges first-hand.  Saskatchewan had more than sixty per cent of Canada’s West Nile Virus cases in April of 2004.  In 1999, nearly nine out of ten Canadian tuberculosis cases were found among Saskatchewan’s Aboriginal community.  InterVac will create new solutions for the people of Saskatchewan, Canada, and the world.

 

On behalf of the Government of Canada, thank you to the University of Saskatchewan and the Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization.  You are vital players, on a global stage as

we face the challenge of infectious diseases, from right here in Saskatoon.

 

Thank you.

 

 
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