Official Visit by Governor Fifi Masuka Saini to Ontario

From June 24-27, we were delighted to host the Governor of the Lualaba Province of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Her Excellency Fifi Masuka Saini. We welcomed hundreds of delegates over four days of programming, among them business leaders and representatives of all levels of government - including Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's Minister of International Development of Canada, the Honourable Ahmed Hussen.   

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Governor Fifi Masuka Saini and Paula Caldwell St-Onge (left in Kolwezi this year) and the Opening Luncheon (right), commencing the four-day program in Toronto.
Canadian companies have invested billions in Lualaba, which lies at the heart of the Lobito Corridor, which is critical to global supply chains for critical minerals, as discussed at our recent Canada-US Forum on Africa.

The Lualaba province is rapidly growing with new mines and businesses, and with the construction of new airports, hospitals and education facilities, as we saw during our recent trade mission.

For this official visit, we were delighted to be working with Marla Tremblay, Executive Director of MineConnect based in Sudbury, as well as MineAfrica Inc and Sara Z Consulting.

While mining remains a major influence on the local economy as a catalyst for growth, the Governor's agenda included economic diversification - to establish the Lualaba Province as a leader in tourism, infrastructure development, agriculture, healthcare and education.

Canada is an environmental leader with programs and services aimed at protecting the environment, drawing on the role of business and market-solutions - enabled by effective legislation.       

Canada’s private sector is in a prime position to play a key role in the ongoing economic growth of Lualaba. Our companies – many of whom are part of the fabric of the global African diaspora - can deepen engagement in various activities in Lualaba:     

  • Mining: Lualaba is home to rich mineral resources, including copper and cobalt. Canadian companies with expertise in mining can explore opportunities for investment and development in the region, given the catalytic role of mining for the development of a variety of other sectors. For example, Ivanhoe’s Kamoa-Kakula Copper Complex is the world's fastest-growing, highest-grade, lowest-carbon major copper mine, producing produced 393,551 tonnes of copper in 2023. Glencore is also in the Province. 
  • Infrastructure development: Canadian companies specializing in infrastructure development are invited to participate in projects related to roads, bridges, and other essential infrastructure in Lualaba.
  • Renewable energy: Canadian companies in the renewable energy sector can explore opportunities for investing in solar, hydro, and wind energy projects in Lualaba.
  • Agriculture: Canadian companies in the agricultural sector can explore opportunities for investing in farming, processing, and exporting agricultural products in Lualaba.
  • Technology and innovation: Canadian companies in the technology and innovation sector can collaborate with local businesses and organizations in Lualaba to introduce new technologies for numerous industries in the region.

‘’The challenges the Democratic Republic of Congo has faced are not unique to the DRC. With proven reforms we've researched, there is no reason the Democratic Republic of Congo could not become one of the most economically free and prosperous nations on earth.’’ 

- Fred McMahon, the Dr. Michael A. Walker Chair in Economic Freedom at the Fraser Institute, Canada’s top-ranked think tank

Official Welcome dinner in Kolwezi with the Governor, Provincial Ministers and members of The Canada-Africa Chamber of Business  

Katebi Beach Lodge on Lake Kivu; a stunning example of the tourism potential as a result of the catalytic economic diversification arising from natural resource development.  

Cover Banner Image: the new Kolwezi International Airport in the capital of Lualaba.

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