Cape Breton delegation has returned from first mission to Vietnam

SYDNEY – Officials from the Cape Breton Partnership and the Union of Nova Scotia Municipalities will be providing their expertise to counterparts in Vietnam over the next four years as part of an initiative implemented by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities and funded by the Government of Canada.

The national program, Partnerships for Municipal Innovation: Local Economic Development (PMI-LED), seeks to increase sustainable economic growth by strengthening the capacity of municipal governments in several overseas countries – Mali, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Vietnam, Cambodia, Bolivia and Nicaragua.

Through this program, the Cape Breton Partnership and the Union of Nova Scotia Municipalities (UNSM) recently entered into a four-year partnership with the Association of Cities of Vietnam to support them in fostering prosperity, attracting investment, and creating business opportunities.
The initial mission of the partnership agreement wrapped up last week and a delegation representing the Cape Breton Partnership and the UNSM have just returned from Vietnam. Carla Arsenault, chief operating officer of the Cape Breton Partnership; Victoria County Warden Bruce Morrison, Victoria County councillor Perla MacLeod, and Port Hawkesbury Mayor Brenda Chisholm-Beaton were in Hanoi and Can Tho, Vietnam from June 22-28 for a series of meetings, workshops and discussions to lay the groundwork for the four-year partnership.
“We’re honoured to have been selected from a number of applicants across Canada to participate in this renowned program,” said Carla Arsenault, chief operating officer of the Cape Breton Partnership. “By sharing our economic development expertise with our colleagues in Vietnam we are strengthening global municipal relations and forming strong partnerships overseas. It is also an important learning opportunity for the Cape Breton Partnership and for local municipal officials, through the UNSM.”
All direct program costs, including travel, accommodations and meals, are covered by Global Affairs Canada, which funds the Partnerships for Municipal Innovation: Local Economic Development program that is implemented by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities. Participating municipalities and organizations, both in Canada and abroad, provide some in-kind contributions, including staff time.
The benefits of those contributions include learning about the issues that overseas municipalities face, improving services here by learning new methods and best practices from municipal experts across the globe, fostering new trade linkages, and discovering solutions to issues that transcend borders.
Over the next four years, UNSM and Cape Breton Partnership officials will help the Association of Cities of Vietnam strengthen its capacity to plan a community-led economic vision, to offer effective economic development projects and services to their communities, and to adopt policies and practices that promote inclusive and sustainable economic development. Specifically, they will be focused on institutional strengthening, training development, strategic planning, advocacy capacity building, policy development, and supporting programs for women elected at the local level.
For more information about the program visit
About the organizations:
The Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) has been the national voice of municipal governments in Canada since 1901. The FCM is dedicated to improving the quality of life and sustainability of local communities by promoting strong, effective and accountable municipal government. Its members include more than 2,000 municipal governments, which represent over 90 per cent of Canada’s population, and 19 major provincial and territorial municipal associations. FCM has delivered international programs to support partnerships and exchanges between municipal governments in Canada and other countries since 1987.
The Cape Breton Partnership is a private-sector led organization formed in 2004 to unite business, municipalities and communities across Cape Breton and Musgrave with the common goals of forging partnerships, capitalizing on opportunities, and building a stronger Cape Breton. The Cape Breton Partnership has close to 200 private sector investors representing a broad range of sector leaders in the Nova Scotian economy. The Cape Breton Partnership works closely with its investors, and community partners to offer economic projects and programs for all of Cape Breton Island.
The Union of Nova Scotia Municipalities is a not-for-profit organization established in 1906 to represent the interests of municipal governments in Nova Scotia. All municipally elected officials in the province are members of the organization. The organization works to strengthen local government through advocacy with the provincial government, research, information sharing, training and development, workshops and conferences. In addition it encourages cooperation and coordination amongst municipalities.
The Association of Cities in Vietnam is a voluntary social organization composed of 105 Vietnamese cities and towns. Established in 2000, it operates both as a non-governmental organization, and as a social professional organization. It is the only organization of local governments in Vietnam and its mission is to provide a link between cities in Vietnam, and to act as a representative of cities as a whole.

Media contacts:

Carla Arsenault
Chief Operating Officer – Cape Breton Partnership
(902) 577-2455

Keith MacDonald
President & CEO – Cape Breton Partnership
(902) 565-8577