Canada Welcomes the World
There has always been a feeling in this world that the near neighbours of the larger or more prominent and influential countries in the world suffer from something of an inferiority complex when placed against their neighbour. As New Zealand is to Australia, as Scotland is to England, there is a feeling that Canada is the poor relation to the United States of America. This feeling comes from nothing more than a cheap, basic reading of the geography and the media profiles of the countries, and is typically quite wide of the mark, but it is still prominent in the way that people talk about the “junior” neighbour. So it should be embraced and celebrated when it is made clear, in any way, that the so-called “little guy” scores a notable success.
For instance, in July the number of people traveling North to Canada from the USA increased by nearly five per cent. There is an increasing feeling that Canada is far from being the “poor relation” here, but rather the more grown-up, sensible alternative to the admittedly attractive superpower with which it shares a border. Since the global financial crisis really dug its claws in (and the vagaries of global trade are such that when it got to one major country its neighbours and trade partners would be affected too), there have been experts in Canada and outside falling over themselves to credit Canada with being uniquely well-positioned to deal with a recession.
Part of Canada’s problem, if it really has one to be concerned with, is that “sensible” is seen as being an unsexy word. There is something of a problem in this world with “dumbing down”, and a country which can claim to be sensible – a highly desirable quality to have, surely – will raise fewer eyebrows than one which can come out, all guns blazing, and promise to really put on a show you will never forget. However, there is now a sense that we are tiring of dumbing down, and that this world has more to offer than the typical and well-worn attractions of the “bigger” neighbours. It is not just Americans who are pouring into Canada. The increase in visitors from Japan in July was a huge 32.4% – and visitors from all over the world increased too.
What this means for Canada is something essentially quite simple. Where there is tourism, there are dollars. As Canada boosts its visitor numbers, it will increase its income from holidaying families and also increase the demand for jobs in its travel sector. This is something that will increase further in the New Year as Vancouver plays host to the Winter Olympics, bringing visitors to Canadian shores in yet greater numbers and showcasing a country that has plenty to be proud of in terms of natural beauty, ease of visiting and a thriving hospitality sector. When Canada welcomes the world, what the world sees is not simply a country which is sensible, but the country that many others would like to be.
To streamline and minimize blog maintenance, I will be discontinuing maintaining the Canadapersonalfinancewebsite.com website (however, I will still hold the domain). I will gradually move all articles from this site to A Dawn Journal. This article originally published on the above website on Sep 25, 2009.
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