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Political Economic Services

The focus of the Political Economic (PE) program is to help governmental representatives build networks, develop policies and implement programs internationally.

Seven core services

The PE program offers seven core services to government representatives:

Information and analysis
PE staff will provide information and analysis on existing or emerging international issues and opportunities for policy and program development. They will prepare reports on political and economic issues relevant to Canadian interests. For analysis of international issues unrelated to bilateral or multilateral priorities, PE staff will provide referrals to local firms known to the missions who can provide quality services.

Policy development
PE staff will help governmental representatives to develop policy options, including information on the positions of other countries, international actors and organizations, as well as any practical, legal and communications implications of a policy proposal. The PE program can also provide advice on the consistency of options with Canadian foreign policy and the international legal framework.

Policy integration
PE staff will facilitate and coordinate the development of Government of Canada policy positions related to international affairs. This is particularly relevant in responding to international crises, as Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada is mandated to coordinate Canada’s response to natural disasters abroad and Canadian policy on international disaster risk reduction. For high-priority issues, PE staff will convene a wide network of stakeholders, including non-governmental representatives.

The PE program will provide advocacy services for issues that will promote high-priority Canadian interests in the international arena. PE staff will assist with planning an advocacy campaign that may include identifying target audiences; convening meetings or organizing events and activities to articulate, promote and negotiate Canadian positions; liaising with the media; and drafting country-specific communications messages and materials.

PE staff will identify and build relations with individuals, firms and organizations that will help bring about the Government of Canada’s international objectives. PE staff will recommend and provide background information on international contacts from all sectors appropriate to the task at hand.

Program delivery
Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada manages a range of programs internationally and contributes to the operations and activities of international organizations. For international programs initiated and managed by other government representatives, PE program staff will provide advice on international issues relevant to program design, review or implementation. For high-priority government-funded programs, PE staff will implement or assist partners and clients to implement programs when it is cost-effective to do so. When the PE program is not a cost-effective delivery mechanism, staff will assist in identifying qualified local implementing agencies.

Visits guidance
Once a visit to a country or region is confirmed, the PE program will provide advice on timing, logistics, security, protocol and Canadian policy considerations. Practical tips on timing and organizing the visit and referrals to a range of local service providers will be provided. For senior government representatives, Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada will provide additional support outlined in the Official Visits Service Standard Guidelines.

Requesting services

When requesting services from the PE program, the first point of contact is normally the relevant geographic desk at Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada (DFAIT) headquarters. PE staff can provide advice on how to efficiently leverage the resources and infrastructure of Canada’s missions abroad and expertise at headquarters.

Please provide as much background information and clarity as possible on your objectives, proposed partners and target audiences. Also, by consulting relevant Canadian stakeholders early in the process and gathering and analyzing relevant background information—particularly related to similar international initiatives—you will facilitate the exchange of information with DFAIT’s PE staff.

Ongoing feedback on the timeliness and quality of the contacts and services we provide and the consultations we facilitate would be appreciated. This feedback will improve our collaboration and ensure that the Government of Canada’s international objectives are achieved.

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